Sacramento Woman Dies Of Water Intoxication After Radio Station Drinking Contest – Complained of Headache And Died Hours Later

Sacramento Woman Dies Of Water Intoxication After Radio Station Drinking Contest – Complained of Headache And Died Hours Later

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A Sacramento mother of three died of water intoxication Friday after consuming large quantities of water in a local radio station contest. The prize was a Nintendo Wii game console, and the mother, Jennifer Lea Strange said she wanted to win it for her kids.

Strange was one of 18 competitors participating in KDND-FM's "Hold Your Wee for a Wii" contest. The contestants were given two minutes to drink an 8 ounce bottles of water every ten minutes. The winner was the last one to use the restroom.

Strange came in second and left with a headache. The Associated Press reports that two other people in the competition said they were never warned that they were putting their health at risk. Strange was found dead just a few hours after the contest.

Gina Sherrod said that family members listening in on told her that a nurse called into the program to warn that drinking too much water was dangerous, but Sherrod did not worry until she learned of Jennifer’s death. Sherrod told the Sacramento Bee on Sunday that "I was so scared. I had the hardest time going to sleep last night because I was afraid I wouldn't get up."

It is unknown exactly how much each contestant drank, but the AP story says one contestant, James Ybarra said he quit drinking after imbibing eight bottles. This conflicts with other reports which indicate Ybarra gave up after just five bottles. He said: "My bladder couldn't handle it any more."

But Strange kept on drinking. One report indicted that she even began drinking larger bottles of water. Sherrod said she managed to drink half of a larger bottle before she became nauseated and had to leave the contest. "I felt drunk and really out of it," she said.

The competition was believed to have been successful when suddenly the 28 year old Strange started complaining of a strong headache. Her body’s vital fluids were likely being diluted by the excess water consumption. The County Coroner confirmed that Mrs. Strange died of “water intoxication”.

Ybarra said “It is sad that a mother had to lose her life to get something for her kids. None of us knew this could be a risk to our health." He said that Strange had shown the other contestants pictures of her two sons and one daughter.

John Geary, vice president and marketing manager for Entercom Sacramento, the station's owner, said: "We are awaiting information that will help explain how this tragic event occurred."

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By Marsha Quinn
Best Syndication Health Writer

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