SOMERSET, Mass. (CBS/AP) — A Massachusetts girl who choked on a marshmallow at a birthday party has died.
Police and a school official say that 11-year-old Azriel Estabrooks died at Hasbro Children's Hospital in Providence on Friday morning. The Somerset girl had been there since she was found unconscious at a friend's birthday party on Saturday.
Her mother, Iris Estabrooks, has said that about an hour after she dropped her daughter off, she got a call from the hosts saying Azriel had passed out.
She says no one realized she was choking and that she was found passed out on the floor. When rescuers arrived, they found a marshmallow lodged in the girl's throat.
Police have not identified the hosts.
An online fundraising page aimed at helping the girl's family pay for funeral expenses has raised nearly $12,000 as of Friday night.
"The family is grieving the loss of their beautiful little girl! She will always be with them in their hearts and watching over them and especially her younger brother and sister," the page reads.
Azriel's grandmother says her passing is surreal.
"Every grandmother loves their granddaughter, but this child was just exceptional," Ione Dean says. "She was just the light of my life.
"It's been hell," she says. "She had begged for weeks, 'please, please, please let me go there like the other kids.'"
The 5th grader loved history and her family. Her grandmother says she was smart, funny and mature beyond her 11 years.
"She has touched, apparently, so many people's hearts. Just was just that kind of kid."
WBZ-TV's Julie Loncich contributed to this report.
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