Two young boys suffered second- and third-degree burns while at day care in Vinita, Oklahoma, this weekend, and the Facebook photos of their injuries are going viral.
The boys' mother, Shaunna Broadway, told BuzzFeed Life she picked up her sons, ages 5 and 7, from day care last Friday and found them crying in pain after they were badly sunburned while at a local water park.
The day care told Broadway that the staff didn't have sunscreen at the water park and told the kids to keep their clothes on, but that Broadway's sons didn't listen.
"It was common sense that they shouldn't have been out in the sun all day, even if they wore their clothes," Broadway said. "The heat index was 118 degrees in Vinita that day. The news was telling us not to be outside."
Broadway called the local hospital, but they said they couldn't do much until the burns blistered.
"They told us to go to the pharmacy, where we got Silvadene cream and pain meds, but nothing seemed to help. They were in pain all night."
By early Saturday morning, the burns began to blister and the boys were in excruciating pain.
"We took the boys to the local hospital on Saturday, where the doctors lanced the boils and blisters on their backs, applied cream, and sent us home with more pain medicine," says Broadway. "But the boys kept screaming and crying all day. My oldest one’s chest started hurting and he said he was having trouble breathing."
The next day, Broadway took the boys to Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for a third opinion. "Apparently the swelling and pain on his back was so bad that he was having pressure on his chest."
On Sunday, the boys were flown to Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston, Texas.
Both boys had second-degree burns, but her oldest suffered third-degree burns as well. "My oldest is a redhead so he's more fair-skinned and his burn was much worse," his mom said.
The family filed a report with the local police department on Sunday and are in the process of finding an attorney.
"We are investigating the criminal element of neglect with the Oklahoma Department of Human Services," Officer Bobby Floyd told BuzzFeed Life. "We've been conducting interviews at the day care, the hospital, and with other parents to see if there's anything that leads us to conclude it was neglect or child abuse."
"It's been confirmed that no other children were sunburned in this situation," Floyd continued. "But we're also looking at videos from the courthouse to see how long kids were left outside, and exhausting all resources to see what happened and hopefully get justice for these boys."
Broadway said that she had already been planning to pull the boys out from Happiness Is a Learning Center.
"There were things that made me very uneasy," she says. "From picking them up dying of thirst because they didn't have anything to drink all day or staff talking to them badly...it wasn't anything serious enough to call the cops but I was definitely thinking of pulling them out."
When reached by a reporter, the day care said there was no one available for comment.