Bed bugs ‘bugging’ family after child’s stay at Seabrook Island camp

A Lowcountry family sent their daughter off to camp, and she returned with more than just memories. She was covered in bed bug bites.

“I was horrified by the severity of the bites”, said Marc Bernard.

Bernard’s 9-year-old daughter came home for Camp. St. Christopher on Seabrook Island in late October with bed bug bites on her arms, legs and face. Bernard’s anguish turned to anger after he got a letter from his daughter’s school saying Camp St. Christopher found evidence of bed bugs. He learned a student in the group visiting before his daughter had bed bug bites.

We talked to the executive director of Camp St. Christopher, Rev. Robert Lawrence. He said once they learned about the bed bug issue, the camp notified parents and disinfected the cabin with a 180-degree heat treatment.

But a month later, another letter was sent out from the camp to a different group of parents. Once again, the camp had a bed bug issue. The cabin was treated was treated.

“I can swear right now we have no bed bugs anywhere on St. Christopher,” said Rev. Lawrence. “That is only as true as the next group that arrives, and if someone reintroduces something, we will not know unless we see it.”

As for Marc Bernard’s daughter, her bites are healing. But Bernard believes the camp should warn parents coming in about the recent bed bug issue.

“I think there are kids who will be there next week,” he said. “I think those parents ought to know and have a chance to cancel if they want to cancel,” Bernard said.

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