LORAIN, Ohio —
The parents of a 13-year-old Lorain County girl thought it was a relatively minor procedure at the dentist's office, but it ended in their daughter's death.
Marissa Kingery, of Elyria, was undergoing oral surgery to have several teeth removed at the office of Doctor Henry Mazorow in Lorain, on December 21.
But a staff member called 9-1-1 to report Marissa became unresponsive during the surgery.
She was taken to Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital, where she was on life support for two weeks, before she died on Monday.
Her aunt, Audrey Leanza, told Fox 8 News, "It's been devastating. We are all truly heartbroken, she was close to everyone in her family and it has been very, very difficult."
The Cuyahoga County Coroner's Office says it appears Marissa Kingery died as the result of a lack of oxygen to the brain while she was under anesthesia during the surgery.
"There is no understanding unfortunately...you know? Life is fragile," said Leanza. "And unfortunately, something that you think is very simple can end up this way."
The Ohio State Dental Board says there have been no complaints against Dr. Mazorow that led to disciplinary action included in the state's public records.
The death of Marissa Kingery and the 81-year-old doctor's handling of the surgery is now the focus of an investigation by the state board.
Executive Director Lili Reitz told Fox 8 News, "In the interim, we may ask a dentist to forego administering anesthesia until the investigation is complete, we may ask him not to practice, we might ask him not to perform certain procedures."
Marissa Kingery was a student at Eastern Heights Middle School in Elyria, where the staff and grief counselors are trying to help Marissa's classmates understand how someone so young could die.
Principal Kim Benetto said, "This is the age where a lot of kids get braces and they get teeth removed and we just tell them that there's a risk with any kind of surgery."
A memorial service will be held for Marissa at the school Friday morning.