Denton first-grader collapses at elementary school, dies

A first-grader died Tuesday afternoon after she ate lunch and collapsed in a Denton elementary school hallway, an investigator with the Tarrant County medical examiner’s office said Wednesday.

An autopsy was performed Wednesday and the cause of death is pending, awaiting histology and toxicology tests that could take several weeks to complete, the medical examiner's office said.

The student was identified as Jensen Wright, 7, of Denton, who died at Denton Regional Medical Center shortly after she collapsed.

Emergency crews were called to Wayne Stuart Ryan Elementary in Denton, 201 W. Ryan Road, Tuesday afternoon.

Jensen had just finished her lunch of a peanut butter sandwich and an apple, said Troy Taylor, chief investigator with the medical examiner’s office in Denton County. She also had brought along stringy cheese, grapes and strawberries but authorities were not sure if she had eaten any of that food, Taylor said.

The first-grader went to the restroom, returned and got back in line to go back to her classroom, Taylor said.

“As she was in line, a classmate yelled at a teacher that something was wrong with her,” Taylor said.

The teacher walked Jensen to a nurse’s office, Taylor said.

“The nurse noticed that her lips were blue, but her heart rate was fine,” Taylor said.

Jensen then collapsed.

The nurse tried a Heimlich maneuver and cardiopulmonary resuscitation before paramedics arrived.

The first-grader was transported to the Denton hospital where she died at 12:41 p.m. Tuesday, according to the Tarrant County medical examiner’s Web site.

Last month, a 9-year-old boy died at a Victoria, Texas, elementary school after choking on a marshmallow. Victoria is in south Texas, southwest of Houston near Matagorda Bay in the coastal area of the state.

Schorlemmer Elementary School student Pedro Vicente Hernandes died Feb. 26 from asphyxia by choking because of a marshmallow.

The incident occurred while the fourth-grader was assembling ingredients to prepare s’mores as part of a fourth-grade writing activity that included a camping theme.

The boy collapsed shortly after leaving the classroom for a drink of water, following complaints of not feeling well, according to a report in the Victoria Advocate.