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Valley author, ASU instructor dies after tragic accident, friend says

Shanna Hogan died on Tuesday after suffering extreme brain damage. Hogan had stumbled, hit her head and fell into her backyard pool on Thursday.
Credit: Shanna Hogan
Shanna Hogan

PHOENIX — A beloved Valley author and Arizona State University instructor died on Tuesday after a tragic accident at her home last week. 

Shanna Hogan died on Tuesday after suffering extreme brain damage, friend Christia Gibbons told 12 News.

Gibbons, in a Facebook post announcing Hogan's death, said "her light, though, will continue to shine on us all. We are better people for having had her in our lives."

In a statement released through Gibbons, Hogan's husband Matt LaRussa said he decided to donate her organs because "I wanted as much of her in this world as possible, and I can someday meet the recipients."

Hogan had authored the New York Times-bestseller "Picture Perfect: The Jodi Arias Story," about Travis Alexander's murder in Mesa. 

She had also worked as an executive editor at the Times Media Group and as an adjunct professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. 

Hogan's editor at St. Martin's Press, Charles Spicer, in a statement called her "an intrepid journalist, a talented writer, a natural podcast star - and an enthusiastic and loving first time mother.

"Speaking as her editor, she was a dream to work with, the consummate professional who was also a kind and thoughtful person with a natural warmth and a delightful sense of fun," Spicer continued. 

"We at St. Martin's Press will miss her terribly."

The details of any funeral services were not immediately known. A GoFundMe is also raising money for her family, including her 15-month-old son Zander.