Tom Bradby pays tribute to ITV News Health and Science Editor Emily Morgan, following her death at the age of 45
Emily Morgan, Health and Science editor for ITV News, has died aged 45.
Emily, whose career with ITV News spanned over two decades, was recently diagnosed with lung cancer. She passed away on Friday night surrounded by her family.
Emily started with ITV News as a producer and was based in Westminster for 5 years before becoming a reporter and progressing to a number of roles including Wales and West of England Correspondent, Political Correspondent, and Health Editor. She was recently promoted to Health and Science Editor and was excited for the new challenge.
As Health Editor, Emily led ITV News' Coronavirus coverage, reporting from the frontline of hospitals throughout the pandemic and produced multiple investigations into racial prejudice, PPE failures and Long Covid among others.
In 2021, Emily reflected on the challenges covering the pandemic saying: "It isn’t easy reporting on deaths, especially large numbers. What every death is not, is a statistic. Yet, with so many, the fear is each one gets added in with another and they become a blur of numbers."
"That is why it is so important to reflect on individual cases, speak to family and friends, use victims’ names, photos and memories. It is impossible to do this with every one but crucial to do it with as many as possible."
While Emily was proud of her work, her greatest source of pride was her family, including her two young daughters. She told many colleagues at work that she wanted to be remembered, not as a journalist, but as a mother, wife, sister, daughter and friend. "They are the things that matter," Emily said.
Steve Barclay, the health secretary, said he was "sad" to hear of the news. “Her exemplary reporting throughout the Covid pandemic was a vital public service – helping to keep people safe. My thoughts are with her family and friends at this time,” he wrote on Twitter.
Jeremy Hunt, chancellor and former health secretary, said Emily's death was "devastating".
He tweeted: "Emily was a superb journalist and a truly lovely person with whom I was truly lucky to work over many years. Goodness me life is cruel but we are all thinking of her amazing contribution as well as her treasured family today."
Also paying tribute, ITV News Editor Andrew Dagnell said: "We are deeply saddened by the passing of our remarkable colleague, Emily Morgan. Emily was not only an incredibly talented journalist, but a much-loved member of the ITV Newsroom and her absence will be deeply felt by all who knew her." "As our Health and Science Editor, Emily played a pivotal role in shaping our coverage through some of the most important stories of our time, including her courageous reporting through the COVID-19 pandemic, visiting hospitals and health care workers on the front lines, and sharing their stories with our viewers."
"Her reporting was instrumental in exposing the immense pressure and strain that NHS workers were under, and she became a trusted voice for the public during an unprecedented time. Emily’s passion for the role was evident in everything she did and her work was a constant reminder of why journalism matters." "Her dedication to informing and educating our viewers will continue to inspire all those who were privileged to work alongside her. Our thoughts are with Emily’s family. Emily was proud to be a journalist, but she was even more proud of her family. She adored them. We are sending them our love and support at this unthinkably difficult time." "Emily was an exceptional journalist, a devoted mother and wife and a true trailblazer in our field. Her friendship, her professionalism and her enormous contribution to our industry and to the public conversation will not be forgotten.”
Rachel Corp, Chief Executive of ITN also paid tribute, saying: "Emily played a pivotal role in ITV News for many years and her exceptional talent, unwavering commitment to the team and compassionate approach were evident to all of us."
"Emily’s impact extends to the wider ITN family; she devoted her energy and skills to ITN for over two decades. Those of us fortunate enough to have worked alongside her would agree that Emily cared deeply about everything she did, and her dedication was as clear behind the scenes as it was on screen."
"This is why her absence will also be felt by our viewers, not least given her courageous, calm and compassionate reporting during Covid-19. When our viewers were in lock-down, anxiously awaiting daily updates, it was Emily who was there for them - a trusted and familiar face, guiding them through complex scientific reports and data, and tackling misinformation and conspiracy theories"
"She was there on the frontline, speaking to patients and healthcare workers in hospitals and care homes, doing so much incredible work to shed light on the pressures faced by NHS workers and the impact of Covid on the vulnerable."
"Emily touched the lives of many with her knowledge, kindness and empathy – those she worked with, those she interviewed, those watching from home. She had so much to be proud of in her career, and in her life with her devoted family."