Mother of Mason graduate ‘looking for answers’ after her daughter’s illness and death

Simone Scott, 19, a 2020 Mason High School graduate and freshman at Northwestern University, died Friday for unknown reasons. SUBMITTED PHOTO
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Simone Scott, 19, a 2020 Mason High School graduate and freshman at Northwestern University, died Friday for unknown reasons. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Family trying to figure out how teen who seemed healthy contracted virus which attacked her heart.

Last month Simone Scott, with assistance from her father and stepfather, flew home from college and surprised her mom on Mother’s Day.

“It was executed to perfection,” her mother Valeria Kraimer said of the surprise. “I had no clue at all. I was thrilled to see her.”

Then the enthusiasm in her voice disappeared.

“We had no idea that would be her last time home,” Kraimer said. “Nobody knew.”

Thirty-three days later, Scott, 19, a 2020 Mason High School graduate and freshman at Northwestern University in Chicago, died.

Now the family is trying to figure out how their daughter, who seemed perfectly healthy earlier in the school year, contracted a virus that attacked her heart. Scott, who received a heart transplant on May 23, died Friday morning at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

“We are still looking for answers why this happened,” her mother said.

Explore‘Bright, talented and ambitious’: Mason graduate, Northwestern freshman dies after heart transplant

Scott, who was pursuing a double major in broadcast journalism and political science/pre-law, died after contracting a virus that was not COVID-19, said Tracey Carson, spokeswoman for the Mason school district.

Scott received two doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. She had the first vaccine on April 3 and had severe reactions that mirrored the flu, according to her mother. Then no reactions to the second vaccine on May 1, her mother said.

She returned to Chicago on May 11, two days after Mother’s Day, and felt extremely ill. Multiple tests came back negative, including the COVID-19 test, her mother said.

She was rushed to a Chicago hospital and intubated because she was in heart failure, her mother said.

“This is a big blow,” her mother said. “This never entered our imagination. One year ago she was graduating from high school and we were looking forward to her being happy at Northwestern with all the college experiences. This was not part of the plan.”

Her father, Kevin Scott, who works in Washington, D.C., said he’ll be “forever grateful” to those who have supported the family through this crisis.

“Never before have I recognized or thought about how prayer can carry us,” he said.

He has heard from people who told him the impact his daughter had on their lives.

“What a wonderful soul she was,” he said.

Scott joined Northwestern News Network as a reporter and anchor soon after she arrived on campus. She made the Dean’s List the first semester, her mother said.

Funeral arrangements are pending, and a GoFundMe has been started in Scott’s name.

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