College football honors reporters Edward Aschoff and Carley McCord during 2020 National Championship Game

 Edward Aschoff and Carley Ann McCord

(CNN)As reporters gathered in the press box at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome for the College Football National Championship Game, there were two spaces reserved for journalists who died in December.

The work spaces were reserved for Edward Aschoff, 34, and Carley Ann McCord, 30, who both died four days apart from each other. The two reporters also worked at ESPN at one point in their careers.

Aschoff 'always put people first'

A work station at the College Football Playoff National Championship was reserved for Edward Aschoff, an ESPN reporter who died in 2019 of HLH stemming from a case of pneumonia.
Aschoff, an ESPN college football reporter, died on his 34th birthday December 24, according to the network.
    Earlier that month, Aschoff tweeted he had pneumonia.
    "Anyone ever had multifocal (bilateral) pneumonia in their early 30s as some who never gets sick and has a very good immune system? Asking for two friends ... my lungs," he tweeted on December 5.
    Aschoff started working for as a reporter based in Atlanta. He moved to Los Angeles in 2017 to begin a more expanded national role that included television coverage.
    Over the past three seasons, Aschoff reported from campuses across the country for, SportsCenter, SEC Network and ESPN Radio, and worked as a television and radio sideline reporter during college football games, a release from ESPN said.
    "Ed was one of the smartest, brightest reporters I've ever had the pleasure of working with," ESPN Executive Editor Lauren Reynolds said. "For as good of a reporter Ed was, he was an even better person. He always put people first -- those whose stories he told, and those who had the honor of working alongside him."

    McCord remembered for her 'infectious personality'

    A work station at the College Football Playoff National Championship was reserved for Carley McCord, a sports reporter for CNN affiliate WDSU, who died in a plane crash in Louisiana on December 28, 2019.