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SYDNEY, Australia - An Australian man died Friday surrounded by family and friends eight years after swallowing a garden snail on a dare from his friends at a backyard party.
Student athlete and rugby player Sam Ballard, 28, who was 19 when he ate the snail in 2010, was paralyzed after he was infected with rat lungworm, a rare parasitic infection linked to the snail, according to the Independent.
Ballard fell into a coma for 420 days after developing a type of meningitis, which most people recover from, but he didn’t, suffering a severe brain infection instead, Sky News reported.
He was left paralyzed from the waist down and confined to a wheelchair.
He died after years of medical complications.