Mass student, 20, killed in fall while on vacation in Cancun, family say

In an interview Thursday afternoon, Pearse’s older sister, Anna, and their mother, Amy Goldfarb, said they thought she was trying to save the day by climbing onto the room’s balcony while her boyfriend tried to enter through the main building. hall.

While trying to reach the balcony, Pearse slipped and fell, her family said. She died instantly, they said.

“She didn’t tell him what she was doing, that she was going to try to get in from the balcony,” Goldfarb said. “And if she had told him, he would have tried to stop her, and I bet he couldn’t have.” She was unstoppable when she had a plan.

Pearse’s family remembered her as a “bright and brilliant” young woman who had a deep compassion for others, leading her to pursue a career in nursing, which they believe would enable her to helping people on a daily basis.

Anna Pearse said her sister was inspired by their grandfather, who was a doctor.

“She saw her gift for caring for people and knowing how to do it with compassion,” Anna Pearse said.

But Pearse was determined to become a nurse practitioner instead of a doctor.

“She could have decided to be a doctor…but she thought a nurse had more versatility and applicability and closer contact with people,” Goldfarb said.

When Pearse was 18, she started working at Massachusetts General Hospital as a certified practical nurse, according to her obituary. An MGH spokeswoman said she worked in a transplant unit at the hospital.

“His positive energy, creativity and thoughtfulness won the hearts of MGH patients and staff alike,” spokesperson Brandon Chase said in an email. “Our community will come together in the coming days to honor Leah’s memory. We send our deepest condolences to the Pearse family and Leah’s many friends.

Pearse joined the hospital amid the COVID-19 pandemic in January 2021, his family said.

“She applied and got the job and worked hard for this hospital,” Anna Pearse said.

In a TikTok posted in November, Pearse said she was quitting her job at the MGH and described how stressful the job had been while balancing other commitments as a full-time student. She said hospitals should increase the number of nurses they hire so they can provide better patient care.

Pearse was a junior at Simmons University, where she was on a five-year track to earn a master’s degree in nursing, according to her family and a college spokesperson. She was due back on campus next week when classes resume.

In a message informing campus of Pearse’s death, university officials remembered her as an “extremely dedicated” student.

“Leah brought light to every setting, sharing her passion for learning, nursing and patient care with others,” said Helen Bellenoit, an associate professor at the nursing school who served as an advisor Pearse’s pedagogy. “She will be greatly missed by the entire nursing community.”

Sadie Cotler, a fellow junior, said Pearse was “the most wonderful friend, roommate and classmate”.

“Leah managed to make the person she was talking to feel special and seen,” she said.

Pearse, who was born in Newburyport, attended Classical Academy, an entrance exam school within Haverhill High School where she served on student council and was co-captain of the women’s swim team, his family said. She graduated in 2020.

“She was so kind, so opinionated, so smart and observant,” Goldfarb said. “I don’t think I’ll ever meet someone like her.”

Nick Stoico can be contacted at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @NickStoico.

Comments are closed.