The death of Petra Mayer, books editor for NPR’s Culture desk has shocked the media organization and its staff. Doctors believe she died due to pulmonary embolism at Holy Cross Hospital in Maryland said Nancy Barnes senior vice president news on behalf of America’s public radio station WAMU 88.5 FM ( Monstrous Radio).
Mayer was 46 years old when her life came suddenly cut short this past Saturday morning while undergoing treatment at a nearby hospital where doctors discovered what they thought might be an obstruction near one lung caused by blood clots; however, there are still some other factors that need further investigation before coming out with any conclusions about the cause of death.
Mayer had gone through an emergency surgery but her condition turned for the worse after removing her breathing tube during recovery. Mayer was then put into a medically induced coma and soon died after that doctors said.
“Petra was NPR through and through,” Barnes wrote. “To say that Petra will be missed simply seems inadequate.”
“This is a heartbreaking loss for all of us at NPR, our Member Stations, and the millions of listeners in the public radio family,” NPR said in a statement provided to USA TODAY. “Petra’s passion for her work, her love for her colleagues, and her joy sharing books with public radio listeners have made a lasting impact. We extend our deepest sympathy to her family & friends.”
Mayer first joined NPR as an engineering assistant while she attended Amherst College, according to the organization. In 2000 a few years later and after receiving her master’s degree from Columbia University in journalism, Mayer rejoinedNPRin2000 to serve on their books team where for six years now has served as senior producer of “Morning Edition” weekdays 1-3 pm ET or weekends 8 am — 12noonET.
“Mayer was a unique, intelligent voice in the NPR community. She made my day better just hearing about her.”
“She was the best and rarest species of a nerd, whose enthusiasm was eager and sincere and open and inviting,” Weldon added on Twitter. “She wanted you to love the stuff she loved and supplied you hard incontrovertible evidence to support her thesis. Jesus, she was the best of us.”
Co-host of NPR’s “Here and Now” Tonya Mosley wrote on Twitter that it was devastating to learn about the death of Jeff.
Mayer, who hosted for over 30 years before his passing earlier this year at age 57 in April 2018 He will be missed by many!
This is devastating.
Every time I had the pleasure of being in convo w/ Petra I knew we were in for a nerdy good time. We just spoke a few weeks ago about spooky reads and one of her recs is now a nightly favorite. My sincerest condolences to us all. https://t.co/LFMX7FB4C0
— T O N Y A (@TonyaMosley) November 14, 2021
“Every time I had the pleasure of being in convo w/ Petra I knew we were in for a nerdy good time,” Mosley added, remembering her colleague. “We just spoke a few weeks ago about spooky reads and one of her recs is now a nightly favorite. My sincerest condolences to us all.”
The NPR website just published a really great tribute to books editor Petra Mayer, who died today. She was our queen of nerd-itry on the Arts Desk, pursuing stories about books, sci fi, romance, fantasy and so much more with passion and a knowing wit. https://t.co/5v1oba5RBK
— Eric Deggans at NPR (@Deggans) November 14, 2021
When it comes to books, sci-fi and fantasy stories with a knowing wit is what we’re talking about. NPR television critic Eric Deggans remembered Mayer as “our queen of nerd-ity” on Arts Desk who pursued these tales passionately for all those years that he was there at the network.’
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