Leah Siegel, one of ESPN’s first female producers, has died after a battle with cancer. She was 43:
She was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer in August 2008, shortly after the birth of her third child, Oliver. That fall, she was featured in a front-page story in The Dallas Morning News. The story of her battle inspired thousands of strangers to write her. Over the past two years, nearly 50,000 visits were logged to her web page.
Siegel also inspired dozens of her Lakewood neighborhood families to show their support in the annual Komen Dallas Race for the Cure. The group was among the top fundraising teams.
“Leah loved Eric and her kids and her work,” said ESPN reporter Ed Werder. “In the end, I agree with a colleague who told me today that she would rather we remember the good times rather than wallowing in sadness and dwell on our inability to fathom the damned unfairness of this sad ordeal.”
This story was sent to me by a Jewish friend. I can’t determine whether Siegel was, in fact, Jewish. But if so, she would have been, as a woman and a Jew in field of covering professional sports, truly a stranger in a strange land.