A British woman training to become an airline pilot was killed after being bitten by a mosquito in Belgium, a report said Wednesday.
Oriana Pepper was bitten by the insect while in Antwerp in July 2021 and suffered an infection that moved to her brain, according to the BBC.
The 21-year-old went to the emergency room after the bite near her right eye appeared swollen and infected, according to a judicial inquiry obtained by the outlet.
The Suffolk native was prescribed antibiotics and sent home. However, she was rushed back to the hospital two days later by her boyfriend after she collapsed.
She died on July 12, 2021 — five days after she was bitten. The cause of death was septic emboli in the brain.
Nigel Parsley, Suffolk’s senior coroner, explained in the inquiry that the woman died “as a result of a serious infection caused by an insect bite to the forehead.”
“I’ve never seen a case like this before,” Parsely said in a recorded narrative.
“It’s just one of those things that’s just such an unfortunate tragedy for a young lady who clearly had a wonderful career and life ahead of her.”
The BBC reported that Pepper had easily passed her theory exams on the EasyJet and then went to Belgium to begin further training.
Her boyfriend, James, said the couple was bitten multiple times since arriving in Belgium in May but was told by locals it was “normal for the area and time of year,” the Sun reported.
Pepper’s father Tristan said his daughter loved to fly with him and her brother who was also a trainee commercial pilot.
“She had met someone she loved, she was training to be a commercial pilot and was fulfilling her dreams,” he reportedly said during the hearing.