Longtime CBS News staffer Maria Mercader has passed away at the age of 54 due to COVID-19.
Prior to her passing, Mercader had taken medical leave in February because of an unrelated matter. Mercader had reportedly been battling cancer and other related incidents for more than two decades. Her previous conditions are believed to have left her vulnerable to the virus.
“Maria was part of all of our lives. Even when she was hospitalized – and she knew something was going on at CBS, she would call with counsel, encouragement, and would say ‘you can do this.’ I called Maria a ‘warrior,’ she was. Maria was a gift we cherished,” CBS News President and Senior Executive Producer Susan Zirinsky said.
“Even more than her talents as a journalist, we will miss her indomitable spirit,” she added.
CBS is the latest news network to battle the virus. Earlier this month, an NBC News staffer died from the virus. In addition, FOX News has reported six cases of COVID-19 in their New York offices.
Mercader is survived by her brother and father.