Family grieves miracle child's death

Family grieves miracle child's death

WARREN COUNTY, OH (FOX19) - A 16-year-old Hamilton girl died Friday night after visiting Middletown's Land of Illusion, the Warren County Coroner's Office confirms.

Christian Benge, a sophomore at New Miami High School, collapsed at the haunted attraction and was transported to Atrium Medical Center, according to the coroner. She was pronounced dead at the hospital around 10:30 p.m.

The Warren County Coroner said Benge showed no signs of trauma and that there was no injury-related incident inside the Land of Illusion. The coroner's office is looking at a preexisting medical condition in their investigation into her death.

Christian's mother, Jean Benge, said her daughter suffered from Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia, a condition that impacts the internal organs. Doctors told Jean that Christian would likely pass away shortly after birth due to CDH.

"She beat the odds, she was sent home. They took her off the ventilator at 3 months and sent her home to die ... God had other plans." said Jean.

Benge was an active member of the Eaton Road Full Gospel Church where she sung in the choir, according to her obituary. A funeral service is scheduled for 10 a.m. Oct. 22 at Flick Funeral Home.

New Miami Local School District released the following statement from their superintendent Monday evening:

"Dear New Miami parents and community,

On Friday night we lost a treasured member of our New Miami family, sophomore Christian Benge. The district is offering grief counseling and other safe outlets to help our students navigate this difficult time. For details and links to helpful resources visit the district website at:

We also wish to support Christian's family and friends by honoring their request for privacy. Therefore the district will not be responding to press inquiries. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.


Patricia T. Blake"

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