Tuesday, July 21, 2009

n Hanover PA Mom of 555 pound Teenager Speaks Out!

You have to read this story if you have not heard it yet! Truly unbelivable that a parent would let there child grow up to be 555 pounds at age 14! She said, maybe she should not have gotten some of the fast food meals! Craziness, because a couple of fast food meals did not do this, years of neglect did. There would have been some sign over the years that he was a little too big!

This is just as bad as a parent who malnurishes their child. This kid is going to die very soon because of neglect! This is why child obesity is the highest it has ever been in our country. Good going MOM!

(CBS) A mother is being charged with neglecting her obese teenage son, raising issues about whether the government has the right to intervene in one’s family life.

Born and raised in South Carolina, Alexander Draper grew up to reach a dangerous 555 pounds by the age of 14. That’s when law enforcement stepped in.

“The first and foremost concern is Alexander’s health,” Lt. Shea Smith told CBS News.

Alexander’s mother, Jerri Gray, was charged with unlawful neglect of a child for allowing him to become obese.

“There have been opportunities to get Alexander some treatment over the course of the last several months and unfortunately some of those things have not been taken advantage of,” Smith said.

But Gray, released from jail Monday on $50,000 bond, says she does not have enough money to get her son the treatment he needs.

Alexander is in the custody of the Department of Social Services, who in a statement to CBS News said they only intervene when “health care professionals believe a child is at risk of harm.”

“Obviously her son is certainly in need of some medical attention,” Lt. Smith said.

Jerri Gray and her defense attorney, Kim and Grant Varner, appeared on The Early Show Thursday to discuss the situation.

Asked how his weight gain got so out of control, Gray said, “Well, a lot of times it had to do with lifestyle. A lot of times I had to work fulltime second shift or fulltime, third shift. And I wasn’t home a lot.”

Gray told guest host and “Britain’s Got Talent” judge Amanda Holden she had been monitoring her son’s diet, but that there were times she had to purchase fast food, when she’d have to sleep between shifts.

Asked if there are steps she could’ve taken earlier to have helped him not reach that level of weight, Gray said, “When I had a second shift hob, I would’ve rather been home, so that I could’ve spent more time focusing on preparing more low-fat type-meals.”

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