Book Review: A Stolen Life

September 15th, 2005
Illinois Vaccine Awareness Coalition

“A Stolen Life” by Marge Grant
(Precautionary Books, 2005) 172-page paperback

Contact: or

c/o Marge Grant
915 South university Avenue
Beaver Dam, WI 53916

In “A Stolen Life,” Marge grant graphically describes life with Scottie, her 43-year-old son and his severe reactions to childhood vaccinations. It is a mother’s story of day-to-day struggles of parents coping with their son’s vaccine-induced brain insults. Scottie’s vaccinations resulted in mental retardation, seizures, profound spasticity, quadriplegic and nonambulatory conditions.

Scottie’s mother felt that if he had died in 1961, the diagnosis would have been, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) with cause unknown. Her message about her son’s vaccine injuries: “When it happens to your child, there are no benefits, and the risks are 100 percent.

After his shots, Scottie experienced nocturnal seizures, piercing screams, intense lethargy, startle reflex, irritability, decreased appetite, disinterest in toys and slight, jerky movements.

Some doctors deny vaccines’ severe reactions because what will they do if it’s true. However, Mayo Clinic doctor, led by J. Gordon Millichap, M.D., concluded that Scottie suffered severe brain injury from injected vaccinations. His pediatrician gave him Quadrigen, a diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus (DPT)/polio shot at four, five and six months. Parke Davis (now a unit of Pfizer) added the preservative, benzethorium chloride or Phemoral, to the vaccine.

In 1969, the Grants sued. Marge writes: “To take on this giant pharmaceutical company proved to be an experience second to none. We walked into the situation knowing nothing of the cozy relationships that existed and the traditionally well-traveled two-way streets between the vaccine industry and the government regulatory agencies,”

Even though the Grants lost their court case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, Scottie’s mother testified before various Congressional committees. In 1989, she represented parents on the Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines. She discovered conflicts of interest among vaccine bureaucrats. Even the institutes of medicine, allegedly independent, accepts funding from the vaccine and insurance industries.

Vaccine awareness began nationally in April 1982, when Lea Thompson, an investigative reporter from an NBC , Washington, D.C. affiliate, aired, “DPT: Vaccine Roulette, Scottie’s story. Scottie appeared on Chicago’s Phil Donahue TV show on December 9. 1982.

In Wisconsin, Scottie’s mother helped pass, in 1983, a personal conviction waiver that parents could sign for childhood vaccination exemption. It is mandatory that patients’ medical records now contain manufacturer name, date and lot number of every vaccine. The Grants’ pediatrician neglected to record this crucial information and caused them to lose their court case,

Scottie’s mother protested against the national Childhood Vaccine Injury Act, which she said would shield vaccine manufacturers from liability. She felt there would be no incentive to produce and market the safest and most effective vaccines. No penalty exists for doctors who fail to report vaccines’ adverse reactions.

Pharmacist Kristine Severyn, R.Ph., Ph.D., founder of the Ohio Parents for Vaccine Safety, writes the Foreword. She states: “Unfortunately, the prevailing attitude that a few children can be sacrificed for the good of society guides the policy of the U.S. Public Health Service.

“Until you, or one of ‘your own’ (as Jim Grant said) are injured by a vaccine, you don’t realize how much information is withheld and distorted by drug companies and government bureaucrats in their goal to achieve 100 percent vaccination rates. Two such practices are, first, inflating disease incidence: data to mislead the public into thinking a disease is more common than it really is, and second, minimizing reports on adverse reactions to vaccines.”