Englewood student athlete dies after tonsil surgery

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Posted: Monday, December 10, 2012 5:09 pm | Updated: 9:19 pm, Mon Dec 24, 2012.

A Lemon Bay high school student and athlete suddenly dies during a routine surgical procedure. 17 year old Jerone Campbell died Friday while having his tonsils removed. It has sent grief throughout the Englewood community.

It was supposed to be a simple tonsillectomy. It took place Friday at the Charlotte Regional Medical Center. Unfortunately, he never woke up.

"Anytime something like that happens to a young life everyone is just devastated and set back. It has hit them hard," says Mike Riley with Charlotte County schools.

Jerone's family says they're not ready to go on camera. School officials are also keeping the media away. "We want to respect their privacy right now. The school itself, his friends, family. We feel with everything that has happened it would be a distraction at the school."

His family has obtained local attorney Damian Mallard. "Obviously they are very emotionally distraught. They have a child who went in for a very simple medical procedure and they are dealing with a death."

Now trying to figure out how a seemingly healthy young man who was a member of the football team dies from such a routine surgery. "The family certainly wants to get answers so that they can have closure. What happened? Why did it happen? Was this preventable? I certainly hope this was not a situation of somebody not doing their job."

A statement released by the hospital says "Our hearts go out to the Campbell family during this difficult time. We are unable to comment further pending the medical examiner's inquiry and our own internal investigation."

In the meantime a lot of friends, family and complete strangers are left grieving and wondering why. "Its a tragedy. It is really the only way to describe what happened," says Riley.

On Monday at the school special grief counselors were made available for students and staff.

An autopsy is being performed to hopefully shed some light on what happened. The family says a memorial service will be held at the school Wednesday.

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