One local mother told Channel 3 her blinds had cords, and she lost her two-year-old son because of it. She said she shared her story in hopes it will bring awareness to the issue.
Erin Shero is a mother of six. She thought her house was baby proofed, but she still lost a child. She says despite her tragedy, some neighbors and close family friends still have blinds with cords and children in their home.
It's why she's speaking out, she hopes parents and grandparents will listen despite what they may have been taught about tying up cords or cutting them in the past.
"He loved bubble guppies and strawberry milk," Erin Shero, who lost her son, said. "He had the greatest, most infectious laugh ever, and he was a really, really great kid."
Colton died just two days before his second birthday.
It was a normal Thursday morning in October of 2013. Colton was watching cartoons with his older brother in the family room. Erin Shero left the room to make strawberry milk and popcorn.
Before the popcorn even finished popping, Shero found her son Colton lying beneath a window.
"Initially I thought he had fallen asleep," Shero said. " I remember the very thing I said was this silly boy has fallen asleep."
When she realized the cord from the blinds was around Colton's neck, she ran outside with him screaming.
She remembers the roofers from next door gathering around her to pray as she performed CPR and called 911.
Colton was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Four years later, Shero's windows are bare.
"We had all heard that you know tie them up or cut your cords.... unfortunately that's really not the answer because we did have ours tied up," said Shero.
The window was taller than Colton. The blinds came with a safety kit and safety tassels meant to break with added weight.
The medical examiner's office told Shero that Colton died in just 30 seconds of being tangled.
"I don't know how you can hear these statistics and hear this story and find justification to keep them up," Shero said. "There's an old-school train of thought that if you tie them up or you cut your cords, your child is safe, but that is really not the case and trying to get people to understand that for me has been difficult and I've buried a child."
Shero hopes Colton's story will save other children.
"I create stories about who I think he would be, you know he'd like legos and he'd be into Pokemon with his brother, and I see him when I run carpool hopping out of my car and going into kindergarten," Shero said. " I miss the whole life that was robbed, so I miss everything."
A group called "Parents for Window Safety" tells us children have died from cord strangulation or from windows that were out of reach while their parents were in the same room. Children have also reportedly died by strangulation from the inner cord that runs inside the product.
On average one child dies from blind strangulation every month in the U.S. A new study published in the Journal of Pediatrics found that over a 26-year period, nearly 17-thousand children were treated in the emergency room for injuries related to window blinds and 271 died, most from strangulation after becoming entangled in the cords.
The safety commission says windows and window blinds are among the top five hidden hazards in your home.
"It's just like any the safety concern that has ways of prevention, this is no different," Shero said. "It's a hidden danger in your home that you may not even be aware of."