Kelly Ernby, a Republican California prosecutor, passed away from Covid-19 complications. The 44-year-old was very vocal about her thoughts on vaccines during the pandemic. She opposed vaccine mandates and it is unclear whether she was vaccinated herself.
Her death was confirmed by the district attorney’s office and by some of her friends and colleagues. According to her friends, the California prosecutor passed away on Sunday.
Following her death, many people took to her Facebook page to leave messages. They also flooded her husband’s page with messages, some offering condolences, while others ridiculed the deceased California prosecutor for opposing vaccines and then dying from Covid-19.
One person wrote, “No, and she was proud and vocal about being anti vaccine anti mask anti mandate. And now she’s dead because of her ignorance. It’s really sad seeing people willing to die because of lies and the cult.”
Her husband’s Facebook page has since been deleted.
Others on social media are taking the time to remember Kelly Ernby and the memories that they shared together. Ben Chapman, chair of the Greater Costa Mesa Republicans and friend of Kelly’s took to Twitter after her death.
He said, “My heart is broken and I’m in tears. I lost a dear friend to Covid complications. I love you @KellyErnby! You’ve been nothing but an inspiration to many of us here in Orange County.”
A cause of death for the California prosecutor has not been confirmed, and according to her employer, they were not allowed to ask her about her vaccination status. Don Wagner, an Orange County supervisor and friend of Kelly’s, said that she was at home during her time of death and that a blood clot took her life. This has not been confirmed by medical professionals.
Kelly Ernby was a native of California and lived in Huntington Beach, with her husband, Axel Mattias Ernby. She earned a law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law. She described herself as a “political outsider,” and many of her colleagues said that she was passionate about her job, America and the Republican party.
“The Orange County district attorney’s office is utterly heartbroken by the sudden and unexpected passing of Deputy Dist. Atty. Kelly Ernby,” Dist. Atty. Todd Spitzer said in a statement. “Kelly was an incredibly vibrant and passionate attorney who cared deeply about the work that we do as prosecutors — and deeply about the community we all fight so hard to protect.”
According to those who knew her, Kelly was also a big supporter of the environment and helped with many environmental laws in Orange County. She was a member of the county’s Environmental Protection Team and also wrote publications discussing environmental law. In 2019, the 44-year-old was honored with an award celebrating her “significant contributions to Environmental Enforcement.”
In 2020, the California native ran for a spot in the 74th California State of Assembly. Despite the support that she gathered from residents and other California government officials; she did not win. Kelly Ernby was expected to run again in 2022 before her sudden death.
Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, Ernby strongly opposed vaccine mandates and was vocal in her views. She believed that whether or not a person got a vaccine was between the patient and their doctor. In November 2019, she opposed stricter vaccine laws for children in California schools.
“I don’t think that the government should be involved in mandating what vaccines people are taking,” she said. “I think that’s a decision between doctors and their patients…. If the government is going to mandate vaccines, what else are they going to mandate?”
Her family has not released a statement following her death and no funeral plans have been announced.