Neena Pacholke, a news anchor and former college basketball player, died by suicide over the weekend, her sister, Kaitlynn Pacholke, confirmed in a statement to the Tampa Bay Times on Monday.
“My sister was by far the happiest person I thought I knew,” said Kaitlynn, who was teammates with her sister at Freedom High School and currently works as an assistant women's basketball coach at Southern Mississippi. “Sometimes you just don’t know what people are going through, no matter how much you think you know someone. ... My sister had access to every resource you could imagine. She was loved by everybody. She was so good at her job.”
Pacholke, 27, lettered three seasons at USF (2013-16) before a career in news, having recently worked as a weekday-morning news anchor at WAOW, an ABC television affiliate in Wausau, Wisconsin.
“The entire team here at News 9 are absolutely devastated by the loss as we know so many others are as well," the news station said in a statement shared on its verified Twitter account. "Neena loved this community and the people who lived here. She was a kind person with a big heart and a contagious smile and we will miss her greatly.”
Longtime USF coach Jose Fernandez said the program was "devastated and deeply saddened" by news of Pacholke's death in a text message to the Tampa Bay Times.
Pacholke was engaged to be married at the time of her death and is survived by her parents, sister and fiancé.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, reach out to the 24–hour National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255; contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741; or chat with someone online at suicidepreventionlifeline.org. The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay can be reached by dialing 211 or by visiting crisiscenter.com.
Colin Cowherd Ranks the Top 10 NFL Teams After Week 1 of the Preseason
Ben Maller: Fernando Tatis Jr. is a Tarnished Dope and MLB's Quasimodo
NFL Reporter Says Tom Brady Has Looked 'Miserable' at Bucs Training Camp
Rob Parker: Nets, Joe Tsai, Should Fire Everyone Kevin Durant Wants Them To
Jason Whitlock: The United States Doesn't Care About Brittney Griner
Clay Travis Rips 'Woke' Jalen Rose For Saying Mt. Rushmore is Offensive
Colin Cowherd Mocks Aaron Rodgers For His Usage of Ayahuasca, Psychedelics
Jason Whitlock: Brittney Griner Receiving 'Special Treatment' From US Gov't
Jason Whitlock: Brian Flores is a 'Snitch' Who Hurt Cause For Black Coaches
Colin Cowherd Makes His Five Biggest Guarantees For the Upcoming NFL Season