MT. MORRIS (WJRT) (3/12/2018) - A 13-year-old who had what appeared to be a common cold four weeks ago is gone, leaving his family behind -- heartbroken.
Marquel Brumley of Mt. Morris started showing common cold symptoms in February. Doctors believed it was a virus and sent him home.
Then he started having migraines. Doctors in the emergency department at a local hospital gave him over-the-counter pain medication and sent him home again.
The migraines persisted, so Brumley's mom took him to an Ann Arbor hospital. Doctors there, too, passed it off as simple migraines and sent him home.
Then he came home with his left eye nearly swollen shut and droopiness on the left side of his face. His mom brought him back to a local emergency room and demanded answers.
Doctors ordered an MRI this time, which showed a troubling diagnosis.
"Henry Ford read them and the doctor came in and said we - he has a sinus infection, it has penetrated through the bone into the blood vessels in the brain and we see some blood clots," said his aunt, Nicole Alexander.
Brumley went directly into surgery, which was effective in treating the infection. But, the blood clots pressing on his brain caused more trouble.
"Unfortunately, it takes a long time to get blood clots to shrink and the blood clots were putting too much pressure on the brain and he couldn't get proper oxygen to his brain," Alexander said. "So, (Sunday) they told us that he was gone."
She and his sister, Alexandria, are shocked, confused and mostly heartbroken at losing him.
"He was my best friend. And now, I have to go on without him," Alexandria said.
"We're all a little bit of everything. You know, we're just trying to cope with it right now," Alexander said.
Marquel's family is grateful that, despite their short time with him, they have countless memories.
"We always played video games and watched TV together," Alexandria said.
"I'd be leaving for work at the same time they were leaving for school. And, he never ever, ever walked out of the house without saying 'I love you Aunt Nicky,'" Alexander added.
The family is not angry. Alexander said their focus right now is grieving.
"Always had a smile on his face, a goofball, good kid, all 'A' student, just a good boy," she said.
Marquel's mother is a single parent and has had to take off several days to be with him and now to grieve her son's death. If you'd like to help them financially, click on the 'Related Links' on the right side of this story.