A Healthy 7-Year-Old Girl Died Just One Minute Into Tonsillectomy: 'Nothing Was Wrong'

Learning that your child has to have surgery can be nerve-racking as a parent. While many procedures common for children are routine, there are always risks. In 2021, A South Carolina family had the unthinkable happen during a routine procedure on their child that led to a crushing loss.
Paisley Elizabeth Grace Cogsdill was a healthy 7-year-old girl. The energetic second grader was fearless as she went into surgery at Self Regional Hospital in Greenwood. Paisley was having a routine tonsillectomy. One minute into the surgery, things went horribly wrong. The little girl's heart inexplicably stopped. Her devastated family hurredly looked for answers in the little girl's sudden death.

The community banded around the Truelock and Cogsdill families as they processed their loss. A GoFundMe campaign was set up for Paisley's family as they tackled funeral expenses and coping with this tragedy.

A South Carolina family is in mourning after a tragedy that could happen to anyone. The family's healthy 7-year-old girl, Paisley Elizabeth Grace Cogsdill, needed to have her tonsils removed. While many kids might be nervous about having surgery, Paisley's grandmother remembers she was quite the opposite.

"Going into surgery, she had no fear," Mary Beth Truelock told WHNS. "She was smiling and happy. Nothing was wrong, you know. She had no fear."

Not only was she unafraid, but joyous and healthy. Other than snoring in her sleep, she had no known health issues.

About one minute into surgery, Paisley's heart inexplicably stopped. Doctors tried to revive her but were unable to save the little girl.

"Definitely missing her all the time," Mary Beth said. "You don’t understand why these things happen, but we know it was God’s plan and that’s the only thing that can get us through, cause we know it was God."

Paisley's uncle remembers his sweet niece as a ball of energy. "She was just spunky energetic," Cameron Truelock told reporters. "She always keeps us on our toes."

While members of the family have spoken out, Paisley's parents, Austin Cogsdill and Jasmine Truelock, have been too devastated by the loss of their daughter to speak.

I cannot believe my baby girl is already in first grade!

Posted by Jasmine Truelock on Monday, August 20, 2018

An online obituary remembers Paisley as a "gifted and talented student and a straight-A 2nd Grader" at her elementary school. It goes on to recall her love of softball and T-ball, hip-hop dance routines, and gymnastics.

"She enjoyed showing off her craft skills by making arts and crafts but enjoyed giving them away even more," the memorial reads.

Second day of first grade!

Posted by Jasmine Truelock on Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Paisley was also involved in her church. She loved singing and acting in the church plays and being the angel in the Easter Pageant at the First Pentecostal Holiness Church. There will be a remembrance for her there Wednesday night, with a celebration of life Thursday.

"Her years on earth may have only been seven, but the love she shared will last a lifetime," the obituary concludes.

While her life is remembered and celebrated by her loved ones, they also await answers. Autopsy results are expected to provide more clarity into what went wrong.

Paisley's family is incredibly grateful for the support they've received from their community. "This is a horrible time for us," Mary Beth said. "We live second by second right now because nobody should ever go through this pain that you're going through."
A GoFundMe campaign has been started to help the family with funeral expenses. Thus far, over $38,000 has been raised on the family's behalf. Nearly 1,000 people who have been touched by Paisley's story have contributed.

This kind of tragedy is certainly not common. But it is the stuff of absolute nightmares. We'll be sending love and strength to the family at this difficult time as they continue to search for answers.

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