A beautiful, young college student was out partying with her friends when she suddenly told them she wasn’t feeling well. After heading home alone, she was found dead less than an hour later, leaving her loved ones in disbelief. Let this be a warning to others.
Ellie Campbell was an 18-year-old first-year undergraduate student at Canterbury Christ Church University in England, who was studying psychology. The teen, originally from Essex, seemingly had her whole life in front of her. Sadly, it was suddenly cut short in a way no one close to her had imagined.
The young university student was out at a nightclub with a group of friends in Canterbury, partying and having a good time, hitting up a number of bars in town. Then, Ellie, who had a mojito pitcher and four double vodkas,
suddenly turned somber and told her companions she felt unwell. Ellie chose to return home alone, about half an hour ahead of her friends. Little did they know, they would never see her alive again.
After deciding to leave the nightclub and suddenly go home alone, Ellie made it safely back to campus, where she greeted a security guard at her hall with a hug instead of her usual fist bump when she arrived, Daily Mail reported. When her friends returned, however, nothing could have prepared them for what they’d find.
Wanting to ensure their friend was okay, they had a security guard let them into Ellie’s locked room. To their horror and disbelief, Ellie was hanging in the bathroom, according to Kent Online. After cutting her down, her friends began CPR and called for an ambulance. Ellie was rushed to the hospital, but a CT scan showed her brain activity was “incompatible with life,” and she was taken off life support, The Sun reported.
Shocking everyone who knew her, it was soon realized that the young woman had returned home from the nightclub that fateful evening only to kill herself as the coroner ruled her death a suicide. Making this all the more tragic, Ellie had no history of self-harm, no signs of depression, or any mental health problems or conditions, according to doctors. She didn’t leave a note either. Her mood had just suddenly changed, and she took her life because of it.
“There was no note and no indication she was considering suicide. Her mood had changed from a bubbly one to a somber one,” Detective-sergeant Nicky Holland-Day said. “I am unable to say why this popular young girl with such a bright future ahead of her took her own life.”
However, an autopsy and toxicology report found that Ellie had 296 mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood. This is more than three and a half times over the legal limit to drive of 80 mg, and such a level is often characterized by a coma, Kent Online explained. The assistant coroner seemed to believe alcohol consumption played a part in Ellie’s suicide.
“The evidence, in this case, is that there was nothing untoward leading up to her death. She went to the club and then her demeanor changed,” Assistant coroner Katrina Hepburn explained. “Her mood changed and she decided to leave alone. The evidence is that it was unusual for her to go home alone.”
Before concluding, Hepburn said, “Given the state of intoxication, the balance of her mind was disturbed, but I find she did at that time intend to take her own life,” adding, “Whether that would have been the case the following day, in the cold light of day, I don’t know.” Passing on her condolences to Ellie’s family and friends, Hepburn also said that Ellie was known as “outstanding student committed to her studies.”
Although people often drink to “feel better” or “have a good time,” alcohol is a depressant, which reduces a person’s ability to think rationally and distorts his or her judgment. While having a drink isn’t all that big of a deal, drinking excessively can be.
“Alcohol can make people lose their inhibitions and behave impulsively, so it can lead to actions they might not otherwise have taken – including self-harm and suicide,” Drink Aware warns. “According to the NHS in Scotland, more than half of people who ended up in [the] hospital because they’d deliberately injured themselves said they’ve drunk alcohol immediately before or while doing it. 27% of men and 19% of women gave alcohol as the reason for self-harming.”
Let Ellie’s untimely death serve as a warning. Binge drinking, although common among college students and many other young adults, doesn’t come without its fair share of risks. As with anything, moderation is key.
No one wants to suddenly lose a loved one because a night out turned into a blurred state of mind that left them suddenly suicidal, as certainly seems to be the tragic case here. Sadly, many don’t realize the risk they are taking when indulging in a night of binge drinking.
Drunk driving and alcohol poisoning aren’t the only dangers associated with excessive alcohol consumption. Self-harm and suicide are other risks of severe intoxication, even though so many don’t know it. It’s up to us to spread this information and warn them. Having a drink or two is one thing, but having many drinks is a risk that simply isn’t worth taking.