ESPN's Ed Aschoff dead at 34 after battling pneumonia

The reporter recently announced on social media that he had contracted an illness while covering the Ohio State-Michigan football game.

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By Variety and Phil Helsel

LOS ANGELES — ESPN reporter Ed Aschoff, who covered the Southeastern Conference college sports for the network, died Tuesday after a battle of pneumonia. He was 34.

"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 fiancee Katy."

Aschoff had recently announced on social media that an illness he had contracted while covering the Ohio State-Michigan football game had progressed into multifocal pneumonia.

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"I'm on day 4 of antibiotics. Days are getting better but nights are basically fever and coughing and sweating," he said.

"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 wrote in a Dec. 5 tweet.

A graduate of the University of Florida, Aschoff joined ESPN in 2011.

Tributes began pouring in late Tuesday night from the sports broadcasting community.

Katy Berteau, Aschoff's fiancée, wrote on Aschoff’s Twitter account Thursday that Aschoff was diagnosed with multifocal pneumonia, but antibiotic treatment did not work. He was then treated for a presumed diagnosis of HLH, or hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis,"an unregulated, over-activation of the immune system that causes it to attack itself and other healthy tissues."

She said that within three days of being admitted to a hospital’s intensive care unit, he died. Berteau thanked people for an outpouring of love and admiration for Aschoff’s life, as well as for their prayers and condolences.