Australian Man Who Became Paralyzed After Eating Slug 8 Years Ago Dies

Sam Ballard has passed away eight years after eating a slug that left him paralysed. Image 7 NewsMore

Sam Ballard has passed away eight years after eating a slug that left him paralysed. Image 7 NewsMore

Then Sam turned to his mother and told her he had eaten a slug, "And I went, "No, no one gets sick from that, ' " Katie Ballard said". "Trying to act like grown-ups" In 2010, 19-year-old Sam, an avid rugby player, was drinking with Jimmy Galvin and several more of his Australian "mates" when a slug began crawling across Galvin's concrete patio at his home in Sydney.

Tributes have flooded in for a young Australian man who died on Friday after an eight-year battle with an illness contracted from swallowing a garden slug on a dare.

He was later diagnosed with eosinophilic meningo-encephalitis contracted from rat lungworm which is usually found in rodents by snails and slugs can also be infected when they eat rat faeces.

While a tragedy like this might make some parents resentful, Katie did not hold a grudge against the friend who dared her son to eat the slug.

On Friday, Ballard died at age 28 after contracting rat lungworm disease from the slug. His mother, Katie Ballard, who cared for him full-time, was by his side.

Sam Ballard, 29, passed away on 2 November at Hornsby Hospital in Sydney, "surrounded by a room full of love", according to an obituary in The Sydney Morning Herald.

"His last words to his mom: 'I love you, '" she posted online.

When he awoke, the once athletic young man was now paralyzed, and had to rely on help from his mother or caretakers to use the washroom and feed himself.

Ballard did, and soon after he started feeling pain in his legs; the Independent notes he also started vomiting and had dizzy spells.

"So you know he's there", Mr Galvin said.

Michael Sheasby, a friend of Sam, says seeing him in hospital for the first time after the accident was a "big shock".

Although he was unable to speak, "when his friends visited, they said his face lit up and he was very much "still there", News.com.au reports.

"It made his day", his mates said.

"Physios had Sam standing in the frame at the gym", she wrote. Though she had hoped that her son might learn to walk again, Ballard was never able to recover from the impact of eating a slug, before his death. "He spent the afternoon laughing at me as I read him the sports section of the newspaper with new glasses on".

Since last September, the australian health system has chose to reduce the allocation of aid that allowed his mother, Katie, to cover the cost of care.

In 2016, Katie Ballard applied to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) when Sam became eligible for a £300,000 package.

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