NEW YORK (Reuters) - ABC News medical analyst Jamie Zimmerman, 31, drowned when she lost her footing and was swept out to sea while vacationing in Hawaii, ABC News President James Goldston said on Thursday.
Zimmerman, a medical doctor, was alone and attempting to cross the Lumahai River on Kauai's North Shore when she slipped, Goldston said in a memo to staff.
Kauai Police said witnesses called 911 shortly before 4 p.m. on Monday to say they saw a woman being swept out to sea. Lifeguards on a Jet Ski found Zimmerman unresponsive in the water about 200 yards from the mouth of the river and, after bringing her on shore, attempted to revive her with CPR.
She was transported to Wilcox Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, police said in a press release.
Her mother, Jordan Zimmerman, in a Facebook post on Thursday said her daughter earned her medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and had been awarded UCLA's Charles E. Young Humanitarian Award.
"Her accomplishments included helping Congolese refugees in Zambia, volunteering in a cash-strapped hospital in India, building classrooms in Uganda, and working with indigenous people on the Amazon in Peru," her mother wrote on Facebook.
"I hope my baby girl's life will inspire you to take action to make our world better," Jordan Zimmerman wrote on Facebook.
At ABC News, she reviewed studies and researched stories for the Medical Unit, as well as offering meditation sessions for the staff, Goldston said.
"Jamie had a passion to make the world a better place and help all of us lead better lives," Goldston said. "We will miss her."
The New York-based American Broadcasting Co, or ABC, is part of the broadcasting division of The Walt Disney Co.
(Reporting by Barbara Goldberg; Editing by Eric Walsh)