A 19-year-old college student in upstate New York has died of meningitis shortly after returning home.

Family members say Krista Depew had just finished her freshman year at Cornell University.

She was hospitalized Friday night after complaining that she felt ill. Her mother, Marsha Depew, tells the Glens Falls Post Star that her daughter came home feeling sick. Her doctor said she probably had the flu.

Depew was the 2011 valedictorian at Argyle Central School, in Washington County, 45 miles northeast of Albany.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. It spreads through throat and respiratory secretions, not casual contact.

Cornell spokeswoman Claudia Wheatley says students were informed of Depew's death and will be told if there are concerns about the disease.