A popular young nurse with a ‘hidden’ heart problem collapsed and died in her boyfriend’s arms at a garden party, an inquest has heard.
Friends and relatives of 27-year-old Luci Young were shocked when she suddenly leaned forward and collapsed at the birthday party being held after Covid-19 lockdown rules were lifted.
Her partner of six years noticed she was slurring her words and suspected she was drunk.
The coroner heard the nurse then slumped forward in her chair and began “snorting” before her friends realised she was unresponsive.
Party-goers who had spent the evening drinking began to panic, frantically calling 999.
Paramedics arrived within 13 minutes and attempted to resuscitate the NHS rehabilitation nurse.
Surrey Police received a call from the South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAM) after the young woman, from West Molesey, Surrey, had suffered a cardiac arrest and upon arrival officers described the scene as “chaotic.”
The inquest heard that a number of people were “extremely emotional”.
Tragically, Luci was declared dead at the address in Cobham at 12.38am on July 12 this year, in front of her devastated partner, friends and family.
In a statement to the assistant coroner, her mother Toni Young said: “Luci was born prematurely at 32 weeks and she excelled in life.
“She liked to solve problems and was very good at studying. I was very proud of her and will miss her greatly.”
Her partner since 2014, Tade Akinbiyi organised a balloon send off for Luci and raised £5,335 on justgiving for her funeral and a headstone.
He wrote: “Luci was truly a special person and the most beautiful soul. Luci’s love spread far and wide and that was plain to see on the day.
“I will always love you Doll and you will always have a special place in my heart.
“I miss you so much it is beyond belief, the road ahead will be hard but I know there will be a day I will see you again.
“But until then I will lead my life the way you would have wanted with lessons you have taught me.
“I owe it all to you sweetheart, you have shaped me into the man I have become. I love you always and forever.”
The coroner heard how pathologist Dr Michael Hall discovered that Luci had a significant amount of alcohol in her system, consistent with drunkenness, at the time of her death.
Sitting at Woking Coroners Court, assistant Surrey coroner Dr Karen Henderson confirmed that her death was as a result of cardiac arrhythmia and was alcohol-related.
“On July 12 at 12.38am at an address in Cobham, Surrey, Luci Young suffered a cardiac arrhythmia, alcohol consumption and marked steatosis of the liver while she was at house party.”
The justgiving page said: “Luci was such a beautiful person inside and out. She was filled with love, care and compassion which was felt as soon as you met her.
“She was selfless and always put other people first. She was the type of person that would light up a room with her smile and her infectious laugh.
“Luci was taken so suddenly from us and I cannot understand why.
“I guess God takes the best ones first and had a bigger plan for her future.
“Nothing will ever be able to fill the void left in our hearts, but she will always remain close.
“We all love you so dearly and you will never be forgotten.
“Rest in peace my beautiful girl until the next time we meet. I will love you always and forever.”
On Facebook, NHS colleague Diane Brown said: “I worked with Luci at St. Peter’s Hospital. Unsure what has happened. Was invited to her birthday party, she was a lovely gorgeous person. In shock.”
Aunt Helen Young said: “What can I say, I feel like I have been torn apart yet again.
“To lose a brother is bad enough, but to lose his only daughter is torture. Why was our Luci taken from us too?
“A beautiful, intelligent, caring and loving person taken at such a young age.
“Life is so cruel. God bless you my darling niece. My love and kisses always.
“And David, you look after your little girl now. Keep her safe and warm and cuddle her forever in your arms.”