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Daisy Kent Opens Up to Us About Her Life-Threatening Illness: ‘They Didn’t Think I Was Gonna Make It’ (Exclusive)

Bachelor Alum Daisy Kent Recalls Nearly Dying From Meningitis
Disney/John Fleenor

Daisy Kent’s battle with Lyme disease and subsequent loss of her hearing is not the only physical ailment she suffered before her appearance on The Bachelor.

Kent has been open with Bachelor Nation about her health since night one in the mansion when she revealed to season 28 Bachelor Joey Graziadei about her struggles with Lyme disease and Ménière’s disease. Adamant about using her platform as an extension of her advocacy work, Kent has partnered with GSK’s Ask2BSure campaign, raising awareness around getting vaccinated for meningitis B.

Kent suffered from viral meningitis at age 19 during her time as a student at San Diego State University. Neither Kent nor her parents knew much about meningitis or the available vaccine at the time.

“I had this shocking pain going down my spine, I felt like knives were cutting into my back and down my neck,” Kent told Us Weekly during an exclusive interview. “There was a point where they didn’t think I was gonna make it.”

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Kent said it took her about a year to make a full recovery. Having suffered unrelated health complications earlier on, her weakened immune system made her case that much more serious.

“I kept thinking ‘My siblings are never gonna know how much I love them. I’m never gonna get to do everything I wanted to do in my future,’ she recalled.”

Bachelor Alum Daisy Kent Recalls Nearly Dying From Meningitis
Disney/John Fleenor

“When I got home my little sister hugged me and she was like, ‘I thought you were gonna snap in half,’” she told Us of losing 17 pounds. “I just lost so much weight so quickly and I could barely walk.”

Similar to her advocacy work surrounding her hearing loss story, Kent has made it her mission to increase awareness around the disease and available vaccine. She shared her story with fans via TikTok in August 2023. Though finding her platform “intimidating” at some points, she finds the rewards outweigh the risk.

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“Being on The Bachelor and seeing how so many people related to my story and some of the health things I’ve gone through has really made me want to talk more about it and do things like [the Ask2BSure campaign],” she said. “If I can help even just one person by talking about it then it makes all the difference to me.”

While Kent is focused on her advocacy efforts, she knows there is interest in her personal life after coming off a show like The Bachelor. Us Weekly broke the news of Kent’s new relationship with old flame Thor Herbst in April.

“I have an opportunity to share my personal life but I also have an opportunity to share my personal life in a way that can really benefit and help people,” Kent concluded.

With reporting by Sarah Hearon

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