Testimony at the 2018 ACIP Meeting

Oct 26, 2018


Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) Summary Report

October 24-25, 2018

“Hello everyone. My name is Destiny Maynard. This is our son, Christopher Bunch born December 5, 2003. I’m here to help spread awareness to plead to the people who call the shots. 

Christopher was not your average child. He was special – not just to us, but to anyone who was ever fortunate enough to meet him. He was such a leader and so compassionate to life. He was an honor roll student with a GPA of 3.9. He also loved playing baseball and football. Christopher, along with his best friends and girlfriend were beginning a new journey in their lives – high school. They all had such high expectations for this year: first dance, meeting new people, and as Christopher would say, better lunches.

But, all that changed for Christopher on August 14, 2018.

His friends attended high school games that he should have been at and playing in, but wasn’t. His girlfriend attended her first high school homecoming dance without Christopher all because on June 29, 2018, I trusted my son’s doctor’s persistent advice about the HPV vaccination. “This is a preventative,” he told me “and I will be giving it to my children.” God, do I wish I knew then what I know now. 

By July 20th, Christopher was complaining of headaches; by July 31st, a sore throat and headaches; and by August 6th, Christopher was very ill and vomiting at football practice. On July 8th, we went to the local ER where we were transferred to the Iowa City Children’s Hospital on August 9th. 

On August 10th, from a regular room to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) because Christopher’s condition was rapidly deteriorating. 

On August 11th, the most terrifying thing that I have ever witnessed in my entire life – Christopher stopped breathing on his own.

On August 12th, the swelling in Christopher’s brain was so severe, the only action they had to potentially save my son’s life was to perform a  craniotomy on the right side of his skull. Unfortunately for Christopher and our family, the damage was so severe, that he was pronounced brain dead.

On August 14th, his father and I had to make the decision no parent should ever have to make – to unhook our baby that we had raised from life support. 

We will never get to kiss our boy again or hear his voice tell us how much he loves us. 

He will never graduate from high school.

He will never get married. 

He will never have children.

That has all been taken from us.

You voted on October 25, 2011, to offer the Gardasil® shot to boys. How does it feel knowing that your vote killed my son? I also have a letter that Christopher’s neurologist wrote to us, “In many cases of acute demyelinating encephalomyelitis (ADEM), the patient received a vaccination shortly before the onset of the disease, thus strongly suggesting that this immune-mediated disease is triggered by vaccinations in at least some cases. Furthermore, the human papillomavirus vaccine has been specifically implicated in several published reports. Christopher received a vaccination against HPV one month before the onset of ADEM. Therefore, strong consideration must be given to the notation that the HPV vaccination triggered the ADEM in this case.

Thank you. ”