Gardasil: One less best friend

May 17, 5:28 PMVaccines ExaminerNorma Erickson

Jessica Ericzon was one of the first recorded Gardasil related fatalities. Until receiving her third injection of HPV vaccine, Jessica was an all-American teenager, healthy, happy, active, never smoked or took drugs. She accepted every challenge life had to offer with enthusiasm. She was “full of life.”

On February 20, 2008, less than 48 hours after her last Gardasil shot, her parents found her dead on the bathroom floor. She was only 17. According to her coroner, the death was unexplainable. She was gone before she hit the floor.

Pharmaceutical companies, the FDA, the CDC, and medical officials say these events are rare. They say these events may be “coincidental” and are probably not related to HPV vaccines. They claim there “may have been” underlying conditions that caused the events. They seem to have no problem accepting these events as “part of the cost of doing business.” No one in an official capacity seems to be seriously investigating these events.

Those responsible for maintaining the safety and efficacy of medications need to understand the remaining victims of events such as these need answers. They do not care whether Gardasil was the cause, or the trigger, or even unrelated to the event. They just need to know. Friends, families and communities need answers to their lingering questions.

This examiner recently received a letter from one of these remaining victims. Emilia was Jessica Ericzon’s best friend. This is what she wrote:

Gardasil killed my best friend. We thought of living forever. At seventeen, we took our lives for granted. The thought of death never crossed our minds. It was something we heard, or read about. We never thought it could happen to one of us.

The death of a loved one is one of the most indescribable, painful emotional experiences that a  human can face. I encountered this when I lost my best friend, Jessie. There was an unimaginable hollow feeling inside of me.

People say it will take time and time will heal. However, it has been over two years and I am still waiting. The emptiness, the heartache, loneliness, and the tears are still here. Something I battle with every day.

Jessie was my best friend. We did almost everything together. I can remember everything: every laugh, sleepover, secret, hug and tear. It all stays fresh in my memory. Jessie and I used to drive around with the musiic cranked, laughing so hard and singing at the top of our lungs.

I miss it all so much. It kills me inside knowing that she couldn’t sit next to me at graduation. We had plans to go to Plattsburgh together after graduation. We wanted to become State Troopers, so we could eat free donuts. I attended Plattsburgh for my first year without Jessie, trying hard to make Jessie proud of me.

However, each day I cried. Surrounded by thousands of other kids, I felt alone. It was like everyone knew–like it was written all over my face. I felt like I was in a jail cell. I hated it.



Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.