Yan Yinan, co-host of China Radio International’s daily program China Drive, died in an apparent suicide on Friday when she jumped off her apartment building, sources say. Some of her colleagues were seen crying inside the CRI office on Friday.
A source said CRI management has emailed staffers asking them to keep news of Yan’s death off social media out of respect for her family, and that there is an internal “ongoing discussion” about how to proceed.
Yesterday, however, former CRI employee Tom McGregor broke the story in Dallas Blog, though with factual inaccuracies. His claim that Yan jumped off the “CRI building on Friday afternoon” has been disputed by multiple sources at CRI.
“Yinan was a friend, a mentor at CRI, a consummate professional on air and off the air who impacted her colleagues, her workplace, her friends, and her fans every day that they knew her,” said one of her colleagues, who asked to remain unnamed. “This is a loss for all of them.”
A private memorial is planned at the CRI office this Thursday.
Yan’s China Drive co-host, Mark Griffiths, politely declined to comment when reached by phone. We have reached out to CRI management via email.
UPDATE, 8:58 pm: CRI has emailed its staff the following official statement:
China Radio International is sad to announce the tragic passing of Yan Yinan after a struggle with illness. She will be missed as a colleague and friend. Out of respect for her privacy and the wishes of her family, we hope everyone can join us in giving them the ability to grieve in private.