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Teen dies of fentanyl poisoning from laced pill, Texas family says. ‘Worst nightmare’
Charlotte Observer - 3/16/2023
A Texas family is hoping to raise awareness about the dangers of fentanyl after their 16-year-old daughter unknowingly took a fatal amount of the synthetic opioid.
Sienna Vaughn, a junior at Plano Senior High School, died Feb. 19 from fentanyl poisoning, according to her family. She thought she was taking a prescription Percocet pill given to her from a friend as a way to relax in her bedroom.
But the pill, her family said, was laced with fentanyl, a powerful drug the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency says is 50 times more potent than heroin.
“When we discovered her, only an hour or so after she had taken the pill, it was too late,” loved ones said in a GoFundMe.
Her parents found the 16-year-old and her friend laying on the bed at their Plano home, according to KDFW. The friend survived, but Sienna died.
“They didn’t know what they had. They didn’t know it was fentanyl,” Sienna’s mom, Stephanie Vaughn, told KDFW.
The Plano Independent School District addressed the student’s death in a letter to families on Wednesday, March 15. Superintendent Theresa Williams did not name Sienna, but said the district is experiencing “sadness and grief.”
Williams said the school district is increasing its efforts to educate and provide resources to students and their families about fentanyl and drug misuse. Virtual parent workshops will be conducted March 16 and March 23, and a panel discussion about fentanyl and THC is scheduled for March 21 at the Plano Independent School District’s administration building.
The death of Sienna was described by her family as “every parent’s worst nightmare.”
“Sienna was a wonderful young woman who impacted so many people around her through Girl Scouts, cheer and school,” family said. “She loved listening to music, hanging out with her friends and playing with our cats. Her life was tragically taken much too soon and she is greatly missed.”
The family has created the Sienna Vaughn Memorial & Advocacy Fund, which it says will support “efforts to save the lives of other children.”
Sienna’s family said they will attempt to get the life-saving medicine Narcan into schools and raise awareness about fake prescription pills.
“Taking a prescription pill that someone gave her was a mistake, and we had talked to her many times about the dangers of drugs, but this should NOT have been a fatal error,” family said. “With fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills in circulation, people are not getting a second chance.”
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