A young California news producer suddenly died over the weekend after an incident involving a banned rope swing, her employer, NBC affiliate KCRA-TV said.
Morning producer Katie Hoedt, 23, died after falling from a rope swing at Folsom Lake on Saturday, the station said, citing California State Parks officials. Barry Smith, chief ranger of the Gold Fields District of California State Parks, told the station that Hoedt fell roughly 30 feet from the swing and landed on rocks near the water.
Rope swings are not allowed in the area Hoedt was at, he said, as it can be "extremely dangerous."
"You don't know who put the rope swing up. You don't know how strong that is," he said. "...Anything can give out."
Following her fall, the Sacramento Bee reported that Hoedt's friends took her to a nearby boat ramp, at which point an off-duty doctor gave her CPR. When emergency responders arrived, she was taken to the hospital, where she died.
KCRA anchor Brittany Hope wrote on Facebook that Hoedt was one of the station's youngest employees, "a shooting star with knowledge and accomplishments far beyond her years."
"I will miss her giggle in the newsroom, and sweet voice in our ears during newscasts and live shots," Hope said. "...She never had a 'bad day' – and even if she did, she wouldn't let you know about it. Instead, she always brought brightness and positivity to everyone around her. Nothing can dim her shine."
While officials told KCRA that they remove rope swings as they see them, Hoedt's parents told the station that they hope their daughter's death will ignite the need for signs warning of the danger. Had those been implemented before, "she would have never gotten on that rope swing," her mother Beth said.
"We don't want this to happen to anyone else, ever, and that's important to us," her father Andy said.
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