Mika Terry was 6 months old that warm June day. She died in Mikey Terry’s truck in a church parking lot in Maypearl, Texas, forgotten somehow in a rush of everyday distractions. An unfathomable tragedy, such deaths occur with dismaying frequency, reports the Dallas Morning News. The tiny victims sit strapped into car seats, in an environment that grows more lethal by the minute, even on cool sunny days.
More than 40 Texas children have died from hyperthermia in unattended vehicles since 1998. Nationwide, an average of about 35 died each year during that same period. Most recently in North Texas, 10-month-old Beckham Flanagan died in his father’s car in Carrollton on Aug. 25. Last month, Brian Flanagan was charged with a felony count of injury to a child, punishable by up to 20 years in prison. The case will be presented to a Denton County grand jury.