Woman's Cause of Death Confirmed Weeks After She Was Found Unconscious on Indiana Rollercoaster
An autopsy has determined what killed an Ohio woman, who was discovered unresponsive after riding a rollercoaster in Indiana last month.
Dawn R. Jankovic's cause of death was released on Wednesday with Dubois County Coroner Katie Schuck ruling that the 47-year-old's death had "nothing to do with the ride itself, but it basically was just the force."
The official cause of death was listed as exsanguination and avulsion of the right internal thoracic artery, Schuck said in a media release obtained by the Indy Star. In simpler terms, Jankovic had "severe blood loss internally."
The force of the rollercoaster caused an avulsion of the right internal thoracic artery, Shuck said, per 14 News.
On June 4, Jankovic was at the Holiday World & Splashin' Safari with her 17-year-old son Gunnar Merker when she was found unresponsive after riding the Voyage wooden rollercoaster, Fox 8 reported. She was transported to Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center, where she later died.
The ride was closed that day "out of respect for the family," the amusement park announced. "A full inspection of the roller coaster has been performed, and it was determined that the ride operated as it was intended to."
Gunnar told Fox 8 on Monday that Jankovic "was a loving mom."
"She loved going to different places, parks and all that. She was a hard-working mom… She tried her best to support me in all different ways," he said, adding that the day of her sudden death, she had been "fine the whole entire day."
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Gunnar's father Gary told Fox 8 that rollercoasters were something that Jankovic and her son bonded over.
"Him and her are both rollercoaster enthusiasts… They go all over the place to different amusement parks. That was their thing and yeah, they'd been on it before… Just don't know what happened this time," Gary said.
A GoFundMe page was created with the intention of transporting Jankovic from Indiana to her home state of Ohio for a funeral. The campaign has since surpassed the goal of $4,000.