2-year-old 'miracle baby' accidentally kills himself with dad's gun

Utah police officer Owen Leathman's 2-year-old son, Linkin, died after accidentally shooting himself with his father's gun. The toddler's short life is even sadder because he was born with many medical complications that he fought through, earning him the title of miracle baby. 

The child's parents didn't realize that they had left the gun out long enough for him to find and like most children, curiosity got the best of him. They have decided to donate his heart and corneas and told relatives that instead of bringing flowers to the funeral that they should do something memorable with their families. This must be such a hard time on these poor parents who struggled seeing their little boy suffer the first few months of his life, then recuperate, and suddenly lose his life.

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It broke my heart to hear about Linkin's struggle because he was a true fighter and survivor--and even more so knowing that he died in such a tragic way. Thankfully, the parents are not being charged by police, but it just goes to show you that we have to be careful about the things we expose our children to. Although the gun legally belonged to his father--and wasn't his service gun, the weapon was still at easy reach for the 2-year-old to grab and play with.

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What's even more unsettling is the fact that the gun his father owned didn't have a safety clip--something that could have easily saved the toddler's life. No matter what side of the arms argument you are on, it brings great sadness when an innocent life is lost by a weapon that needs more discretion in the presence of a child even when it's not being used.

The Leathmans can't get their son back this time, but this can be a lesson for parents who own weapons and have small children in the house to be safe when having them out. I have a love-hate relationship with guns and believe only certain people should have them, but it makes me more upset when I hear about tragic stories like this that could have been prevented  if the parents had been more careful.

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Topics: death  tragedy  children