U.S. Family Poisoned At Luxury Caribbean Resort: Two Children In Coma, Father Paralyzed

A family from Delaware is fighting for their lives after they were poisoned at a luxury Caribbean resort while on vacation. The Sirenusa Condominium Resort costs $875 a night and features a number of amenities. However, for the family, it also offered life-threatening health problems. The family was staying in their condo when they began having violent seizures. Investigators found the presence of methyl bromide, a pesticide only approved for outdoor use, inside of the condo. The family was rushed to the hospital where two male children are in comas and the father is unable to move or talk.

The Daily Mail reports that Steve Esmond, his wife, Dr. Theresa Devine, and their two teenage sons were poisoned during their vacation in the U.S. Virgin Island. The family was staying at the Sirenusa Condominium Resort on the island of St. John when they became seriously ill. All four were rushed to the hospital for treatment where it was discovered they had been exposed to a deadly pesticide, methyl bromide. The mother, Dr. Devine, was released after experiencing violent seizures. However, her two teenage sons are fighting for their lives and are still in comas. The father, Steve Esmond, is currently unable to move or talk, though he is conscience.

WPBF notes that an investigation uncovered the “presence of methyl bromide” in the family’s rented condo. The pesticide is restricted in the United States because of its acute toxicity and is banned from being used indoors in any capacity. It is also noted that only certified professionals are allowed to use the substance and only in specific agricultural settings. Therefore, it is unclear why the pesticide was found inside the condo. However, a representative for Sea Glass Vacations, which was the rental agent for the condo, says that the condo unit beneath the family was recently treated for pests recently.

The licensed pest control company used in the treatment of the condo below the unit where the family was poisoned was deemed to have been treated by ServiceMaster Global Holdings, the parent company of Terminix. A spokesperson for Terminix says they are cooperating with authorities and are taking the matter very seriously with an internal investigation.

“Terminix is committed to performing all work… in a manner that is safe for our customers, employees, the public and the environment. [Terminix] is looking into this matter internally, and cooperating with authorities. We’re thinking about the family, and we join the community in wishing them a speedy recovery.”

The investigation into how the deadly pesticide got into the condo is ongoing, but meanwhile, the family’s lawyer says the boys are still fighting for their lives.

“The boys are in rough shape. The family are all fighters. They’re fighting for everything right now. I understand it’s a long recovery.”

[Image Credit: Getty Images/ Sullivan]

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