HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A 20-year-old college student whose father was killed in the Sept. 11 attacks has died after choking during a pancake-eating contest.
Police said Caitlin Nelson died at a New York City hospital on Sunday, three days after participating in the contest at Sacred Heart University. She was from Clark, N.J., and was a junior majoring in social work at the Roman Catholic school in Fairfield.
"It's a tragic event that started out as something fun," said Fairfield police Lt. Bob Kalamaras."It was just a tragic accident."
When Nelson started choking at the contest, two nursing students who were there immediately began lifesaving measures and were quickly joined by police officers and paramedics, Kalamaras said. She was taken to a hospital in Bridgeport in critical but stable condition and transferred on Friday to New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center.
Several thousand people gathered on the Sacred Heart campus Sunday night to remember Nelson, a member of the Kappa Delta sorority, and share their grief. A Mass dedicated to her was followed by an impromptu candlelight vigil.