A beloved young journalist died on Christmas Eve, leaving his colleagues at ESPN devastated.
ESPN announced Tuesday that 34-year-old college football reporter Edward Aschoff had passed away after a brief and sudden bout of pneumonia. Tributes soon poured in for the young journalist, who was remembered as a sharp writer with a warm personality, according to the Washington Examiner.
“We are very sorry to have to share the devastating news of the tragic passing of friend and ESPN colleague Edward Aschoff,” ESPN said in a statement. “He died earlier today, his 34th birthday. Our thoughts are with his loved ones, including his fiancée, Katy.”
“He always put people first”
Born in Oxford, Mississippi, Aschoff became known at ESPN for his dapper dress; exuberant, friendly personality; and humorous blogging style, ESPN reported. He wrote columns for the SEC blog, which covers the NCAA’s Southeastern Conference, and he also worked as a broadcast reporter, according to NBC.
Before he died, Aschoff pinned to his Twitter profile his last feature, an interview with LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Hillaire. The journalist was in the midst of progressing to a more national role, covering games on campuses across the country for ESPN.com, SportsCenter, SEC Network, and ESPN Radio.
“Ed was one of the smartest, brightest reporters I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” ESPN executive editor Lauren Reynolds said. “Watching him grow from our co-SEC reporter with Chris Low to a multiplatform national reporter was a treat. For as good of a reporter Ed was, he was an even better person. He always put people first — those whose stories he told, and those who had the honor of working alongside him.”
Aschoff joined ESPN in 2011 after covering recruiting and Florida football for The Gainesville Sun, ESPN reported. He graduated from the University of Florida in 2008.
“He took me under his wing”
The enterprising reporter was also remembered for helping younger journalists catch their breaks. A former colleague and friend from the Sun, sports writer Zach Abolverdi, was just one among many who paid tribute to the departed writer.
He tweeted Tuesday: “Devastated to hear my friend…has passed away after a battle with pneumonia. Ed was a big reason I decided to pursue journalism. He took me under his wing at the Sun and I’m forever grateful. Incredible reporter and an even better person. You will be missed!”
In recent social media posts, Aschoff revealed that he was suffering multifocal pneumonia.
“Anyone ever had multifocal (bilateral) pneumonia in their early 30s as some who never gets sick and has a very good immune system? Asking for two friends…my lungs,” he tweeted on Dec. 5.
Tragically, Aschoff died on his birthday. He was engaged and planning to get married in April.