Queens family demands answers after new mom dies at hospital during postpartum treatment

Local News

QUEENS, N.Y. —  A distraught family continued to demand answers Wednesday after the sudden death of a young Black mother of two during a hospital stay last month.

Linda Magee was still grieving the death of her 29-year-old daughter, Denise Williams.

“I need answers, I need answers,” Magee told PIX11.

In August, Williams — mom to a 2-month-old and 3-year-old — was rushed to NYC Health + Hospitals/Queens for symptoms of postpartum depression. Magee said Williams was not eating, so she called 911 to get help.

Two days later, Magee received a call from the hospital that her daughter had died.

“They said, ‘Do you have a daughter named Denise Williams?’ I said, ‘Yes, I do. Do you want me to come pick her up?’ And they said, ‘No, she is dead,” Magee said.

The circumstances surrounding Williams’ death were still unclear Wednesday. The family said they haven’t been able to get any answers from the hospital, as first reported by The City.

Loved ones described Williams as a loving person. Her aunt, Charlene Magee, said her death has taken a toll on the family. During the day, she takes care of Williams’ two children. At night, Williams’ sister, Belinda, takes the kids.

A spokesperson for NYC Health + Hospitals/Queens told PIX11 that they have been communicating with the family.

“We are committed to providing quality, compassionate and safe care to all our patients and we will continue to communicate with the family as appropriate,” the spokesperson said.

The family is now part of an ongoing crisis that many are unaware of: the maternal mortality rate of Black women.

In New York City, Black women are eight times more likely to die of pregnancy-related complications than their white counterparts.

While Williams’ family awaits the autopsy report that will determine her cause of death, they are planning a rally for justice next month. 

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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