Almost two months after the ABC News executive’s death, the medical examiner concluded that the original cause of death—a heart attack—was incorrect.
On December 23, 2022, Dax Tejera died unexpectedly from a “heart attack,” according to a statement sent out to employees by ABC News president Kim Godwin.
Tejera was the executive producer of the ABC News Sunday public affairs show “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.”
“It’s with a heavy heart and great sadness that we share that our friend and colleague, Dax Tejera passed away suddenly of a heart attack last night,” Kim Godwin said in a statement.
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“As EP of “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” Dax’s energy, passion and love for that show, ABC News, and you, shined every Sunday morning. That same love was extended to his precious girls. Our thoughts are with his wife, Veronica, the couple’s two young daughters, and the entire Tejera family,” Godwin continued.
World News Tonight paid tribute to Tejera in one of its episodes.
Watch the video below:
.@RachelvScott reports on the sudden passing of Dax Tejera, the Executive Producer of @ABCThisWeek. In a memo to employees, @ABC President Kim Godwin said that Dax’s passion and love for the show shined every Sunday morning. pic.twitter.com/Cl7P5EJ1O5
— World News Tonight (@ABCWorldNews) December 25, 2022
Dax Tejera’s wife, Veronica Tejera, was arrested for child endangerment hours after he passed away.
Veronica Tejera was booked on two counts of “acting in a manner injurious to a child.”
Apparently, Dax and his wife left their two-year-old and five-month-old babies unattended in a hotel room, so they could go to a posh Midtown restaurant.
A spokesperson for the NYPD’s public information office told Variety that “police responded to a 911 call at 11 p.m. that evening, reporting ‘unattended children’ at 50 Vanderbilt Avenue in Manhattan. That address houses The Yale Club, a members-only hotel.”
“Police said a preliminary investigation ‘revealed that a 2-year-old female and a 5-month-old female were left alone inside of a hotel room for an extended period of time,’” the report added.
On Wednesday, authorities released new information suggesting that Dax was choked to death because he was too drunk during a night out with his wife.
According to the New York City Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, Dax Tejera died from “asphyxia due to obstruction of airway by food bolus complicating acute alcohol intoxication.”
New York Post reported:
His wife, Veronica, was arrested just hours after he collapsed for leaving the couple’s young kids alone in a hotel room in the Yale Club that evening. The widow and mother of two was charged with child endangerment but has insisted she was monitoring her children.
Pushing back on the charges, the mom said she brought her husband to the hospital and asked her parents and a close friend to watch their 5-month-old and 2-year-old while she monitored them by camera.
“The hotel would not allow my friend in and instead called the NYPD,” she said in a statement after her arrest.
But sources told The Post the couple left their kids at home to go to dinner with friends at Bobby Van’s 230Park.
An employee there said Dax seemed unwell shortly into the meal, prompting a server to check on him.
“So, before anyone ate, just after the server brought the orders, he asked, ‘Are you OK, sir?’” the staffer told The Post.
The inebriated producer then “got up and started walking like he was going to the men’s room, but he made a right instead and went out the front door and the server followed him outside.”
“The server said that he collapsed in the corner, right here outside the restaurant,” the employee said. “It was terrible and a terrible shame they left little, little children alone like that.”
ABC also lost another employee, ABC Producer Erica Gonzalez passed away the week before Tejera.
The cause of her death was not disclosed by ABC 10News or her family.
ABC has been in litigation for denying religious exemptions for the vaccine.