The parents and grandparents of 7-year-old Randi Robertson returned home Monday after spending the weekend waiting for an autopsy on the girl that failed to immediately determine the cause of death.
When Randi died Friday night after being airlifted to Spokane from the hospital in Republic, Wash., the Seattle family agreed to an autopsy assuming it would be done immediately. They didn’t know autopsies are rarely, if ever, done on the weekend in Spokane County.
Grandfather Ken Robertson criticized the county’s lack of a system for weekend autopsies. Coroner Dexter Amend said he did everything possible to get an autopsy, but staff was unavailable on the weekend.
The autopsy was done Monday and the family left, accompanying the girl’s body back home.
Randi was at a family reunion near Republic when she started showing flulike symptoms on Wednesday. On Friday afternoon, she was airlifted to Sacred Heart Medical Center, but doctors were unable to save the girl.
At first, Robertson’s death was blamed on meningococcal meningitis, but now health officials are unsure.
A culture taken from the girl on Friday is now casting doubt on that diagnosis, said Dorothy McBride, an official with the Northeast Tri-County Health District, which oversees Ferry, Stevens and Pend Oreille counties.
“It may be growing something else. It could be totally different,” McBride said.
She noted, however, that it could still be neisseria meningitidis, the bacteria that causes meningococcal meningitis, she said.
Final results should be available by Wednesday, McBride said.
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