The three children, Theodore McGee, Camden Ellis and Curren Collas, were all close in age — between 22 months and 2 years old. All boys died within a span of two years. The cause, in each case, was the same: a tragic accident involving tipped-over Ikea furniture.
Each death happened at home; each death came as its own unimaginable shock. Curren’s mother, Jackie Collas, took to Facebook and her blog, Heaven Has a Hero, to go public with the story of how a dangerous dresser claimed her son’s life. Collas entered Curren’s room on a February morning in 2014 to dress the toddler for breakfast. T
“The dresser was completely flipped over. Then I saw that his body was trapped underneath the dresser,” Collas wrote. “At that point I started screaming.”
In the wake of the tragedies, Ikea, the largest furniture retailer in the world, made the first in a series of attempts to correct the problem. Last July, the North American branch of the company partnered with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to launch a campaign offering free wall anchors to secure the dressers, using screws to hold the wardrobes upright. The program cited the popular Malm style, in particular, though that represented about a quarter of the roughly 29 million Ikea dressers targeted by the repair program. As of April, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported Ikea customers had requested some 300,000 anchoring kits.
The accidents, however, did not stop.