Teenager dies in front of London Eye from allergic reaction to grilled chicken

Owen Carey died in front of the London Eye after eating grilled chickenREUTERS/Eddie Keogh

A student who was in London with his girlfriend to celebrate his 18th birthday collapsed in front of the London Eye and died after suffering an anaphylactic reaction to grilled chicken.

Owen Carey, from Crowborough in East Sussex, had earlier eaten what he believed to be plain chicken in a restaurant, but left most of it as he didn't like the taste.

Carey collapsed as he walked towards the Sea Life Aquarium with his girlfriend, Martha, on Saturday (22 April).

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London Eye staff and a passing doctor tried to help and paramedics rushed to the scene. Owen was taken to nearby St Thomas's Hospital but was pronounced dead 45 minutes later at 4 pm.

London Eye employee Claire Gilbert was quoted by the Evening Standard as saying: "I was working at the Eye on Saturday and saw what happened. I saw my team members attending to him along with the paramedics.

"I can't imagine what you're feeling, being a mum myself. After my shift I gave my oldest son a huge cuddle. My thoughts are with you and his loved ones at this very sad time."

Carey, who formerly attended Skinner's School, suffered allergies to peanuts, milk, spices and wheat. He usually carried an EpiPen but forgot to take it and suffered his first anaphylactic reaction.

In an emotional Facebook post, Owen's father Paul Carey, 60, from Cornwall, wrote: "This time last week I was saying goodbye to my younger son, Owen, as he went off from Plymouth on the coach back home to Sussex. Today, a week later, I have to start preparing myself to say goodbye to him for ever."

He continued: "Have a look at the websites of any one of the charities supporting people with allergies and anaphylactic reactions, notably, anaphylaxis.org.uk. I am going to help them to raise awareness of this awful problem that really, truly can rob people of their lives. It has robbed me of my son, and I will never, ever, be able to replace him. He has gone forever."

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