A family is reeling after Caitlin Nelson, a 20-year old woman, died after choking in a pancake-eating contest.
The student died at a New York City hospital on April 2nd, just three days after participating in the contest at Sacred Heart University. She had started choking and despite having two nearby nursing students trying to help her, as well as paramedics and police after, it wasn’t enough to save her.
Nelson had been taken to a hospital in Bridgeport in critical but stable condition and transferred on Friday to New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center.
Lieutenant Bob Kalamaras said: “It’s a tragic event that started out as something fun.”
Nelson had been studying social work at the Roman Catholic school in Fairfield. “The SHU community is mourning today,” the school said in a statement. “We ask that during this time you give Caitlin’s family and the members of the SHU community privacy while they grieve.”
The student was a part of the Kappa Delta sorority as well. Several thousand people gathered at the Sacred Heart campus to pay their respect.
This isn’t the first time her family has faced tragedy. Nelson’s father was killed in the September 11 World Trade Center attacks.
James Nelson was a Port Authority of New York and New Jersey police officer who died while trying to rescue people trapped in the World Trade Center.