PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – According to Chatham University, 23-year-old Kaitlyn “Katie” Eckelberry, who passed away in a deadly crash over the weekend, worked for the university as a part-time assistant softball coach.
University representatives told KDKA, Eckelberry began her career with Chatham last December. The school released this statement:
“The Chatham community is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Kaitlyn. Our condolences, thought and prayers are with the Eckleberry family.”
Eckelberry graduated from Gannon University in 2018, majoring in Physician Assisting, according to campus officials.
As a student, she played for the Gannon Women’s Softball team.
In a statement issued by the university, Michelle Wiley, Gannon Softball Coach said:
“She was a perfect example of a successful student-athlete. She was one of the hardest workers that I have ever known both on and off the field. She pushed herself and her teammates to get better every day. When I think of Katie, I always smile because she had such a beautiful soul and such a passion for life and softball. She was an amazing student, teammate, athlete, sister, daughter and most recently coach. She had such a positive impact on everyone she came in contact with.”
Eckelberry also earned numerous accomplishments including graduating cum laude, being named the National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-American Scholar-Athlete and receiving the NCAA Division II Athletics Directors Association Academic Achievement Award.
Lisa McGurick, Athletic Director, Gannon University told KDKA, Katie had a passion for making a difference in her community.
“I worked with her as the advisor for our student advisory committee. She was so deeply committed to our efforts for Make-A-Wish,” said McGurick.
Funeral arrangements have not been announced.