Medill freshman Simone Scott dies from pneumonia complications

Jacob Fulton and Yunkyo Kim

Medill freshman Simone Scott died Friday morning following a heart transplant, Vice President for Student Affairs Julie Payne-Kirchmeier announced Saturday in a message to the community.

Scott came to Northwestern from Mason, Ohio, and joined Northwestern News Network as a reporter and anchor soon after her arrival. At her high school, she was a student leader in multiple respects, serving as a class officer for all four years and becoming a pivotal member of the school’s broadcast program, Mason Broadcast Crew.

“I am so saddened by the news of Simone’s death,” Medill Prof. Larry Stuelpnagel said in a Saturday community message from Medill Dean Charles Whitaker. “I was fortunate to have her in my 201-1 journalism class in the fall where she shared her love of TV news and jumped right into reporting for the Northwestern News Network. Her passion and joy for life and reporting was the very definition of ebullience. At NNN we all loved Simone and miss her terribly. There is a new bright star shining in the night sky tonight. 

In addition to journalism, Scott studied political science on the pre-law track and developed strong connections to the community.  

Scott’s death came weeks after a heart complication in May which led to a heart transplant. She passed away due to pneumonia-related issues, and was surrounded by her parents. 

“Simone’s death is a devastating loss to her family, her friends and to many on campus whose lives she touched,” the University’s email stated. “Bright, talented and ambitious, she made a deep impact during her time in Evanston.”

The University will hold a confidential virtual grief space Saturday from 5 to 5:45 p.m., and asked students to reach out to Counseling and Psychological Services or other resources if they need support in processing their emotions. 

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