WTTW journalist Elizabeth Brackett dies following bicycle accident

CHICAGO— Longtime Chicago journalist and "Chicago Tonight" host Elizabeth Brackett has died at 76 after she was critically injured in an apparent bicycle accident on the lakefront, WTTW said in a statement.

Brackett was a triathlete, and she was discovered by a good Samaritan near the lakefront path at 39th Street Beach Wednesday after apparently falling from her bicycle. She had been in a coma since she was discovered.

In its statement, WTTW said:

Brackett, who was also a five-time world champion triathlete, was a tenacious reporter, exceptional writer, skilled and insightful host, and, above all, a valued colleague and friend to everyone who worked on Chicago Tonight. Since her retirement from WTTW in 2014, she had remained an occasional contributor, focusing primarily on environmental issues. She filed her final story only 10 days ago.

“All of us at WTTW are devastated by the news of Elizabeth’s death,” said Chicago Tonight’s Executive Producer Mary Field. “She is a friend and beloved colleague, and her loss will be felt not only here but in Chicago’s journalism community, of which she was a highly respected member, and among her many friends and competitors in the athletic world.

Among the many achievements outlined in her obituary was time spent early in her career as a general assignment reporter at WGN in the early 1980s. WGN would like to express our condolences to Brackett's family and the "Chicago Tonight" team.