Female rugby player (23) with history of concussion dies after collapsing with head injury during training
'Selfless' animal lover dies after suffering injury in Devon, as friend says she was symptom-free before returning to game following month off
A female rugby player and zookeeper has died after collapsing with a head injury during a training session for a county team.
Lily Partridge, 23, suffered the injury at North Tawton's ground in Devon on Sunday and was taken to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital. Her family confirmed on Tuesday that her life support was switched off.
Ms Partridge's parents Jeff and Liz said the "selfless" animal lover and teaching assistant was also an organ donor and they hoped three or more people would benefit from her decision.
"The void that has been left in the hearts of her team mates and the wider club will be impossible to fill"
She played as hooker for the Exonian Ladies rugby team in Topsham.
Team captain Katie Lunnon said Ms Partridge had a history of concussions, adding: "She took a month off and was symptom-free before she returned to playing."
On her player profile, Ms Partridge wrote: "I have always loved rugby, playing and coaching tag when I was younger, but had never had an opportunity to play until Exonian Ladies was formed."
Ms Partridge also worked for the Shaldon Wildlife Trust near Teignmouth in Devon, specialising in primates.
In a statement, the club said: "We are devastated to hear that Lily Partridge, a talented, vivacious and universally-loved founding member of Exonian Ladies' rugby team, has died following a training session for Devon Ladies."
Lily was an integral part of building the team and everyone who knew her was "utterly devastated", the club said.
The statement added: "The void that has been left in the hearts of her team mates and the wider club will be impossible to fill.
"We extend our deepest sympathies to Lily's family and friends, who have understandably asked for privacy at this most tragic of times."