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Student's Drowning Due in Part to Carbon Monoxide

Coroner decides it was a factor in Allyson Sidloski's May 22 death
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 28, 2021 4:16 PM CDT

(Newser) – A University of Cincinnati soccer player who drowned last month was apparently impacted by carbon monoxide, with WKYC reporting very high levels of it were detected in her blood. Allyson Sidloski, 21, died May 22 at Ohio's East Fork State Park. Cincinnati.com quotes Deputy Coroner Russell Uptegrove as writing in a June 17 opinion, "It is my opinion, based on the autopsy findings and the information available to me at the time of the autopsy that the cause of death is drowning and the contributory cause of death is carbon monoxide intoxication. Sidloski, who was named a TopCat scholar in multiple semesters for achieving a 4.0 GPA, had reportedly been hanging on to a swim platform attached to a boat when she disappeared. Cleveland.com reports she most likely inhaled the fumes then. She wasn't wearing a life jacket.

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Ohio Department of Natural Resources Lt. Michael Sterwerf tells WLWT that odorless carbon monoxide is a concern for his colleagues and other boaters, as engine exhaust can be common by some lake decks and docks. "If we’re tied up to something, one of us will get a headache and we’ll be like, we’re getting carbon monoxide sickness is what we are getting." As WLWT explains, "the gas denies the body of oxygen, leading to disorientation. That leads to drowning." A GoFundMe campaign started by Sidoski's family stated, "We would like to help her legacy live on by creating scholarships in her name. No flowers please." It had a goal of $5,000; nearly $110,000 has been raised as of this writing. (Read more drowning stories.)

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