A top rower for Kansas State University hadn't been feeling well and suspected she had tonsillitis. But Samantha Scott put off getting medical treatment for too long, and by the time she went to the hospital two weeks later, it was too late, per People: The 23-year-old architectural engineering major died Saturday, not of tonsillitis, but of a rare bacterial infection. The sickness, called Lemierre syndrome, typically starts in the throat (as Scott's did) accompanied by a fever, then pushes pus-filled tissue through the body and to major organs. By the time it was found in Scott, the antibiotics usually used to treat the infection were useless. "On Saturday, I guess she 'coded,' and there was no way to help," Kennidi Cobbley, Scott's lifelong friend from her hometown of Fort Morgan, Colo., tells KDVR.
"Samantha was a great leader for our program and more importantly a great person," her rowing coach said in a statement. "She was so well-liked by all of her teammates and had such a big impact on our program both on and off the water." A GoFundMe set up by Cobbley to help Scott's parents pay for medical expenses incurred and now funeral costs had raised nearly $5,000 as of Friday morning. The GoFundMe site notes Scott was also an accomplished basketball player and gymnast before she headed to Kansas State to try her hand as a rowing coxswain. (An MLB player recently fought off a life-threatening bacterial infection.)