Family hit by E. Coli: 'It was heart breaking'

By Jillian Marshall
By Matt Hicks
By Perry Russom

July 18, 2013 Updated Jul 18, 2013 at 12:51 AM EDT

(WBNG Binghamton) The Broome County Health Department has confirmed two cases of E.Coli from late last month.

They say they're conducting an investigation into each case to ensure the public's safety.

For a local 3-year-old boy who was one of the two confirmed cases, his family said it could have been much worse.

The night after swimming in Nathaniel Cole Park, Cassandra Martin's son complained of a stomach ache.

Anthony's stomach problems fluctuated over the next few days.

"It was heart breaking. I mean he was in so much pain he'd curl up in a ball grabbing his stomach and crying and at one point, he tells me he wants me to help him and I didn't know how. It was just heartbreaking," said Martin.

He ended up going to two emergency rooms. His stool was tested and doctors discovered he had E.Coli

"Thankfully he has not and hopefully will not experience the worst of the symptoms, so we're thankful for that," said Martin.

Broome County Public Health Director Claudia Edwards said in a statement Wednesday that a preliminary investigation found Nathaniel Cole Park could be connected to Anthony's case of E. Coli. She also said it's just as possible he contracted E.Coli another way.

"My concern is that there are other cases of it being reported and the common denominator seems to be Cole Park," said Judy Reid, Anthony's grandmother.

Others think the public should have known sooner.

"Even if they don't shut the park down, at least notify the public so people can make their own informed decisions if they want to go there and expose themselves to that, and if they do experience symptoms, they know what to look for," said Martin.

According to the health department, Cole Park is safe for swimming and other recreational activities.