A college athlete who grew up swimming in her backyard pool tragically drowned in a lake while boating this spring in Ohio, leading her parents to wonder: how could this have happened? Per People, the culprit turned out to be a silent killer not always associated with boats. Carbon monoxide, a coroner ruled, was a contributing factor in Allyson Sidloski's death in May. The 21-year-old, who'd just completed her sophomore year at University of Cincinnati, where she was a star soccer player, was seen holding on to a boat before disappearing under the water.
In an interview with Today, Sidloski's parents issued a warning about the danger carbon monoxide poses to boaters. "We can't bring our daughter back but if we can try to save other people from having to go through this, we want to do our best to do that," Tracie Sidloski said. The US Coast Guard reported 41 boat-related carbon monoxide poisonings and five deaths last year. Experts suggest the incidents may even be underreported as patients fail to give exact details of circumstances that led to symptoms like headache, fatigue, and nausea. Sidloski's parents are reportedly planning to sue Yamaha, maker of the boat Allyson was on, alleging the boat has seats in the carbon monoxide "danger zone." Yamaha has declined to comment. (Read more carbon monoxide stories.)