Family: 2-year-old dies after dental appointment

An Arizona family is left confused, devastated and looking for answers about just what happened during a young boy's ...

Posted: Jan 6, 2018 2:26 AM
Updated: Jan 6, 2018 2:26 AM

An Arizona family is left confused, devastated and looking for answers about just what happened during a young boy's dental appointment.

The family of Zion Jay Gastelum said the 2-year-old died after a dentist appointment in Yuma last month. Zion's uncle told ABC15 the child's parents dropped him off at Kool Smiles Dentist on December 16 for a crown and filling, and somehow either during or after the process, it appears Zion stopped breathing.

According to family, Zion was transported to Yuma Regional Medical Center and then flown to Maricopa County, where he died several days later.

ABC15 confirmed the Maricopa County Medical Examiner's Office is handling the case and the cause and manner of death remain pending.

Gastelum passed away on December 20.

"Everything about him was just lovely," said Zion's grandmother, Norma Yarrito. "A lovely, lovely little boy."

In digging into what happened, ABC15 reached out to multiple agencies. The Yuma Fire Department confirms they responded to Kool Smiles in December for an "emergency medical response." The Yuma Police Department confirms they assisted fire officials with a "medical issue" at Kool Smiles on December 16.

Yarrito told ABC15 her grandson's funeral services were held Wednesday night.

She remembers a very bright light in the young boy.

"He was just the apple of everybody's eye and the light in their hearts," Yarrito said. "He was just so loving that everybody loved him."

Citing HIPAA and other restrictions that come with privacy laws, a company spokeswoman for Kool Smiles declined further comment, but did email the following statement:

The Kool Smiles family expresses our sincere, heartfelt sympathy to the family of Zion Gastelum. Our hearts are breaking for Zion's family at this very sad time. Since Kool Smiles' founding nearly twenty years ago, we have safely and compassionately provided needed dental care through more than 19 million patient visits. Our dedicated dentists, anesthesiologists and the rest of our Kool Smiles family join the community to mourn this tragic loss.

Meanwhile, Yarrito remembers her grandson as constantly having a smile on his face, and she offers advice to other parents.

"I want them to know that when they take their kid to doctors or a dentist, they need to be present at all times," she said. "Just love your kids with all your heart because you never know what's going to happen."

Gastelum's family has setup a GoFundMe page to help raise money to cover funeral expenses.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 501097

Reported Deaths: 9990
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34338538
DeSoto32117403
Hinds31939628
Jackson24494382
Rankin21995390
Lee15543235
Madison14581280
Jones13851242
Forrest13453251
Lauderdale11991317
Lowndes11050188
Lamar10521135
Pearl River9533237
Lafayette8550140
Hancock7732127
Washington7438158
Oktibbeha7146131
Monroe6777177
Warren6694176
Pontotoc6664102
Neshoba6637206
Panola6531131
Marshall6467134
Bolivar6317148
Union602894
Pike5820152
Alcorn5669101
Lincoln5436135
George496879
Scott472898
Tippah469281
Prentiss467281
Leflore4658144
Itawamba4636105
Tate4588111
Adams4587119
Copiah448592
Simpson4446116
Yazoo444187
Wayne439772
Covington428894
Sunflower4239105
Marion4226108
Coahoma4160105
Leake408288
Newton381779
Grenada3707108
Stone360364
Tishomingo359792
Attala331589
Jasper329965
Winston314291
Clay308076
Chickasaw300367
Clarke292494
Calhoun279446
Holmes267987
Smith264050
Yalobusha234047
Tallahatchie228051
Greene219348
Walthall218763
Lawrence212940
Perry205556
Amite205156
Webster202946
Noxubee186740
Montgomery179656
Jefferson Davis171743
Carroll169138
Tunica159839
Benton148838
Kemper141941
Choctaw133426
Claiborne132737
Humphreys129538
Franklin120228
Quitman106428
Wilkinson105139
Jefferson94534
Sharkey64120
Issaquena1937
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 818652

Reported Deaths: 15378
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1147091924
Mobile724971336
Madison52231697
Shelby37575349
Baldwin37224549
Tuscaloosa35073612
Montgomery34092739
Lee23519246
Calhoun22221482
Morgan20910378
Etowah19816498
Marshall18338303
Houston17360412
St. Clair16034339
Cullman15406293
Limestone15328199
Elmore15186286
Lauderdale14270295
Talladega13827281
DeKalb12637261
Walker11180370
Blount10179176
Autauga9967148
Jackson9860183
Coffee9205191
Dale8884185
Colbert8840201
Tallapoosa7079198
Escambia6766132
Covington6706183
Chilton6633161
Russell635259
Franklin5959105
Chambers5607142
Marion4995126
Dallas4949200
Pike4791105
Clarke475484
Geneva4568127
Winston4507103
Lawrence4309117
Bibb424686
Barbour357576
Marengo337890
Monroe331463
Randolph329864
Butler325896
Pickens315682
Henry311966
Hale311188
Cherokee302360
Fayette292379
Washington251351
Cleburne247460
Crenshaw244875
Clay243068
Macon234163
Lamar223347
Conecuh185953
Coosa180040
Lowndes174764
Wilcox168739
Bullock151644
Perry138340
Sumter132938
Greene126644
Choctaw88227
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Partly Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 49°
Feels Like: 62°
Columbus
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 61°
Oxford
Partly Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 62°
Starkville
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 61°
Clear cool and dry to begin your weekend, but both afternoons should be a little bit above what we expect for this time of year temperature wise. Rain chances begin to return late Sunday night, with at least two chances for storms over the next week, summer could be strong.
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather