A former high school basketball player and airport baggage handler working in the New Orleans International Airport was killed on Tuesday after her hair had reportedly got accidentally caught in a conveyor belt, with her family and co-workers mourning her sudden death.

Jermani Thompson, 26 years old, was working in the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport unloading the baggage in a Frontier Airlines airplane when her hair got tangled up in a conveyor belt, causing her to be severely injured before she died after being taken to a nearby hospital, according to the New York Post.

One Frontier Airlines flight was canceled that day due to the accident, though the rest of the flights for that day went on as planned. As many started to hear about Thompson’s death, her friends, family, and co-workers eulogized about the woman and her life, NOLA reported.

“We are heartbroken and are supporting her family and her friends as best we are able to,” Mike Hough, the CEO of Thompson’s employer GAT Airline Ground Support, said.

Her mother, Angela Dorsey, spoke about Thompson’s athleticism, while her high school assistant coach Stasha Thomas-James pointed out that she was the team captain of her high school’s basketball team in her senior year, and that she had plans to play in the WNBA after graduating college.

“She loved basketball,” Dorsey said. “She was my baby girl. Everybody loved her. I'm just lost for words. I can't even think.”

Thompson ended up attending Hesston College for two years after graduating from East St. John High School, earning an associate’s degree before moving on to Tougaloo College where she graduated with a sociology degree.

“She was the kind of kid who was always smiling, a great teammate,” Daniel Harrison, the women’s basketball coach at Hesston during Thompson’s stay, said. “She wasn't the biggest or the tallest. But whenever she went on the floor, she gave me everything she had. There was no quit in her, no matter what the score was.”

“Jermani was part of our airport family, and we will continue to support one another in any way we can during this trying time,” New Orleans Airport Director of Aviation Kevin Dolliole said.

It is unclear as of press time if her death is being investigated by local authorities.

A worker at an airport in New Orleans was killed on Tuesday after her hair reportedly got caught in the conveyor belt machinery while unloading luggage inside an airplane. This is a representational image. Oskar Kadaksoo/Unsplash.

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