CBS News executive who contracted the coronavirus dies in New York

Maria Mercader is seen in an undated photo (CBS News via L.A. Times)

Maria Mercader is seen in an undated photo (CBS News via L.A. Times)

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CBS News veteran Maria Mercader has died from complications of COVID-19, the first media executive to die as a result of the pandemic.

The network confirmed that Mercader, 54, died Sunday in a New York hospital. A former producer who spent her career at the network, she was director of talent strategy at the news division.

Mercader, who lived in Manhattan, had been on medical leave from CBS since late February. She was a cancer survivor who had undergone numerous treatments and surgeries that left her among the most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

Mercader was involved in much of the network’s coverage of foreign and domestic breaking news for three decades and lately helped shape talent strategy for the news division.

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