There is some sad news to report this holiday season as ESPN SEC reporter Ed Aschoff passed away on his 34th birthday after a nearly month long battle with pneumonia. Lake City Reporter staff writer Zach Abolverdi broke the news while paying tribute to his mentor.
Devastated to hear my friend @AschoffESPN 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! pic.twitter.com/OIVvAYM5Kl
— Zach Abolverdi (@ZachAbolverdi) December 25, 2019
Aschoff graduated from the University of Florida with a journalism degree in 2008. Right after college, Aschoff remained close to Gainesville covering Gators football, basketball, and baseball for The Gainesville Sun. In 2011, Aschoff was hired by ESPN to cover SEC football on their SEC blog.
Aschoff revealed on Instagram that he came down with pneumonia while covering last month’s Ohio State-Michigan game and posted on Twitter that he had a virus two weeks before that and turned into multifocal pneumonia.
Tributes poured in from those within the college football community after hearing the horrible news.
This is absolutely devastating news. Praying for Ed’s family. I can’t believe this. https://t.co/Cr3q9v1igE
— Nicole Auerbach (@NicoleAuerbach) December 25, 2019
Crushing. So young, so nice. Today was his birthday. Profoundly sad news. https://t.co/2y3k8kgymg
— Pat Forde (@ByPatForde) December 25, 2019
Stunned and devastated. Incomprehensible, really. Ed was a tremendous guy, this is such a tragedy. https://t.co/nrUtpMJNpX
— Dan Wolken (@DanWolken) December 25, 2019
Ed was pure sunshine and I don’t know anyone who loved his people harder. I’m devastated. https://t.co/w3jkIjbwbF
— BUM CHILLUPS, NPR CLASS PUNDIT (@edsbs) December 25, 2019
Devastating news. Ed was a bright light in our corner of the world: Smart, talented and gracious. Condolences to his family and friends.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) December 25, 2019
don’t know what to say. just letting you know. damn. https://t.co/uGO3ThlKHL
— bomani (@bomani_jones) December 25, 2019
Just a terribly sad story. Ed was well respected and was making a name for himself in the industry and to pass away on his birthday right before Christmas is even sadder. He will be missed.
UPDATE: ESPN posted a statement about Aschoff’s passing and announced his passing during the Hawaii Bowl as well as SportsCenter.
Statement from ESPN: “We are very sorry to have to share the devastating news of the tragic passing of friend and ESPN colleague Edward Aschoff. He died earlier today, his 34th birthday. Our thoughts are with his loved ones, including his fiancée Katy.”
— ESPN PR (@ESPNPR) December 25, 2019
Sportscenter mention of Aschoff’s passing after the Hawaii Bowl. A fade to black followed before going into commercial. Imagine ESPN may produce a segment for future use at some point pic.twitter.com/ATGQc8ABbd
— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) December 25, 2019