Bean bag chair deaths prompt recall

McKINNEY, TX (WFAA) -- Ian Welton's room looks exactly like it did three years ago. Even the calendar on his desk hasn't been changed.

There are little reminders of the loving and gifted 13-year-old.

"He played the french horn, he played the guitar, he played the piano, he was in honor choir," said his mother, Rebecca Bisson. "He was amazing, and in one freak, crazy, tragic accident, he's gone."

Bisson said she never thought twice about the bean bag chair which sat in his room for years. But in 2011, Ian was playing around, unzipped the chair, crawled in, got stuck, and suffocated.

"I never thought he would have ever climbed in it," Bisson said.


Ian's family says they did what they could to save him.

"Any mother that loses a child, any family that loses a child -- it's unbearable," the mother said. "And every day is still hard."

A 3-year-old girl in Kentucky also died inside one of the chairs.

On Friday, about 2.2 million bean bag chairs made by Ace Bayou Corporation were recalled by the U.S Consumer Product Safety commission.

The chairs were sold at Bon-Ton, Meijer, Pamida, School Specialty, Wayfair and Walmart stores and online at, and They cost between $30 and $100 and were sold before July 2013. They come in all different colors, shapes, fabrics and sizes.

Owners of the bean bag chairs should check if the zippers open, and take them away from children if they do, the CPSC said.

Ian's mother said she is talking because she wants other families to know the dangers.

"What I want parents to know is either get rid of the bean bag - because your child's life is not worth whatever you paid for the bean bag - either get rid of it, or seal so they can't get in it," she said.

Ace Bayou, which is based in New Orleans, is offering customers a free repair kit that will stop the zippers from opening. Customers can order one at

Rebecca Bisson said while the recall is important, she also wants to tell parents that life can be fragile and they should cherish the moments they have with their children.

The Associated Press contributed to this story


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