Bre Payton, a Fox News talking head and contributor to the conserative site The Federalist, has died following a sudden illness, People magazine reports. She was just 26.
The Federalist confirmed Payton's passing in a statement: "Bre Payton, our beloved staff writer for The Federalist, passed away on Friday in San Diego, California, following a sudden illness."
Payton's friend, Morgan Murtagh — a Republican who lost her race for a congressional seat from San Diego in November — announced that she had found Payton unconscious, asking her Twitter followers for prayers. Later, Murtagh had the grim duty of informing supporters that Payton had passed away after surviving a day in a coma.
Thank you everyone for your prayers. It is with a heavy heart that I type this. Unfortunately Bre has passed. Please send prayers to her family. Rest in paradise you beautiful soul. https://t.co/pMFCZNaqKl— Morgan Murtaugh (@morganmurtaugh) December 28, 2018
Payton had been battling the flu and meningitis.
Numerous conservative political figures have expressed their shock and sadness over Payton's passing, including Meghan McCain and her husband Ben Domenech, the founder and publisher of The Federalist.
Ben and I are absolutely gutted and horrified by this news. Our prayers for @Bre_payton and her family. We are less without her - in every possible way. A wonderful, fearless, vibrant, intelligent young woman. Sending prayers to all of her family and friends during this darkness. https://t.co/K5nfRiB7gy— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) December 28, 2018