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Teenage hockey player dies of allergic reaction to popcorn

For most cinema lovers eating popcorn while you watch looks okay,but that is not the case for a talented ice hockey player who died of popcorn allergy

Ruben Bousquet died aged just 14 after eating popcorn at an Odeon cinema, and having left his epipen at home while on the day out

The teenager had regularly visited that cinema as a child and had eaten the same sweet popcorn he had eaten on the day he died, his mother told Southwark Coroner’s Court.

Ruben, a promising player in the London Knightz ice hockey team, was allergic to cows milk, raw egg and soya and food allergies ran in the family, the court heard.

The youngster had suffered multiple anaphylactic shocks in the past, including in March 2017 which he survived after taking a shot of his epipen.

On the day he died the teenager was watching a film with his parents and had been eating popcorn with a Fanta drink during the screening at around 8.30pm

As he started to feel unwell the family decided to return to their home in Balham, London, to access Ruben’s epipen, which he had left behind, the court heard. His family called 999 at 20:39.

Talented 14 year old Ice Hockey player Ruben Bousquet

Ruben was breathing fine when they got in the car but as the journey continued he complained of hives on his torso, his mother told the court.

Judith Bousquet, an HR manager, said that her son began “pulling at his throat” within minutes of reaching their home.

She said: “As soon as he mentioned he didn’t feel well, we said let’s go. At that point there were no signs of great stress.

“When we walked to the car my husband asked how his breathing was, he said ‘that’s fine, that’s fine.'”

She added: “But at about two to three minutes from the house he started pulling at his throat. He couldn’t even talk, I could see he was struggling, struggling with everything. His chest was puffed up and swollen.”

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Once at home Mrs Bousquet administered two shots of his epipen. After the second shot Ruben collapsed and fell unconscious before his mum started cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Ambulance crews arrived soon after and took over the CPR before taking him to Evelina Children’s Hospital in central London where he later died.

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