Longtime American Red Cross employee Donna Morrissey has died, the organization said Saturday, calling her compassionate and unwavering in her dedication to the organization's work. She was 51.
Morrissey died from the coronavirus, a friend of hers told NBC10 Boston.
"We know this is a profoundly difficult time for many families coping with the personal impacts of this coronavirus pandemic," the American Red Cross said in a statement on Morrissey's death. "As colleagues, friends and partners in the greater community, the Red Cross stands in solidarity and grief with people who have lost loved ones.”
Morrissey had served in American Red Cross since 2003, when she left her role as the spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Boston. She was director of national partnerships for Red Cross Biomedical Services.
She had worked on large-scale disasters including the Boston Marathon bombing, the Sandy Hook shooting and hurricanes Harvey and Sandy.
"She never hesitated to do whatever she could to help those in need during their most devastating moments, whether that was a hand to hold or a shoulder to cry on," read a statement from the American Red Cross. "Donna's heartfelt compassion, vibrant spirit and unwavering dedication will be dearly missed by the Red Cross family."
Before her career in public relations, Morrissey was an assignment editor at WBZ-TV.
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“Donna was smart and sweet and her heart was boundless. She only spent 51 short years on this Earth but didn’t waste a second of it... Donna had an amazing zest for life, whether it was getting into PR mud fight, going bowling or getting us in trouble at the yacht club while gassing up my speedboat on Martha’s Vineyard," said George Regan, the Chairman of Regan Communications Group. "Our relationship always remained close and I will miss my dear friend with the heart of gold.”
Morrissey was a "tornado-like force" who helped make Regan's public relations firm what it is today, he said.