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Samya Stumo on her bicycle in Copenhagen in 2017.

Samya Stumo, who grew up in Sheffield, dies in Ethiopia plane crash

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By Tuesday, Mar 12, 2019 News 13

Sheffield — A Berkshire County native is among those who perished in Sunday’s catastrophic crash of an Ethiopian Airlines jetliner that killed 157 people.

Samya Stumo, 24, and a 2010 graduate of Mount Everett Regional School, died as a result of the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 near the town of Bishoftu, Ethiopia. As of Tuesday afternoon, authorities were still scrambling to put together a comprehensive list of the victims.

Yogesh Rajkotia, founder and CEO of ThinkWell, the health systems development organization where Stumo had just started working, confirmed the death in a Facebook post Sunday evening.

Stumo is the daughter of Michael Stumo and Nadia Milleron of Sheffield. Milleron is the niece of consumer activist Ralph Nader, who is a native of nearby Winsted, Connecticut. Stumo also has two brothers, Adnaan and Tor, who graduated from Mount Everett and the Hotchkiss School, respectively.

Samya Stumo, right, with her brothers, Adnaan and Tor.

According to her biography on the Washington, D.C.-based ThinkWell’s website, Stumo was “an analyst working on strategic purchasing for primary health care in six countries.” Stumo was working out of Washington, though ThinkWell also has offices in Mozambique and Switzerland.

It is not known precisely where Stumo was headed. Flight 302 was scheduled to travel from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Nairobi, Kenya. In a March 8 post on her Twitter account, Stumo said she was learning from a music educator “whose work has been getting me pumped for my upcoming first trip to Kampala,” the capital city of Uganda, which borders Kenya to the west.

Stumo, who grew up on a farm in Sheffield, was a 2015 graduate of UMass Amherst and had received a master’s degree in global health from the University of Copenhagen. She had also worked at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health in Spain. Rajkotia, her boss at ThinkWell, described Stumo as “a rising star, contagiously enthusiastic about her work and about life in general.”

The Stumo family, from left, Michael, Adnaan, Tor, Samya and Nadia Milleron.

Stumo’s father, Michael, is an attorney and is CEO of the Coalition For A Prosperous America, a nonprofit organization that focuses on trade policy reform. Her mother, Nadia Milleron, is an attorney and a volunteer with the Sheffield Land Trust.

Stumo’s grandmother is Laura Nader, a noted anthropologist at the University of California at Berkeley, and the sister of Ralph Nader, who ran for president multiple times. Laura Nader could not be reached for comment, but members of the family are reportedly en route to Ethiopia to identify Samya’s remains at the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa.

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13 Comments   Add Comment

  1. Lois Reynolds says:

    So sorry to hear of this tragedy….prayers to all….no words can express …….

  2. Marilyn Kalish says:


  3. Brian Tobin says:

    This is so very sad. Our community has lost a precious and special young woman. We send our sincere condolences and love to her family and friends. B&B

  4. Erik Bruun says:

    Just the saddest story on the loss of a beautiful life.

  5. Joe N. says:

    Heartbreaking. There are no words…

  6. Amy A. says:

    An extreme loss…to her family and the world community. No words to express.

  7. Maureen Seward says:

    My heart goes out to her family losing a child is the most devastating thing a parent can endure. I will pray for all of you, God Bless sincerely Maureen Seward

  8. JS Industry says:

    Cannot believe this happened, Rest in peace, You will be missed,

  9. Carl Stewart says:

    I remember Samya when she was a student at Mt. Everett. She was breathtakingly smart and engaged in life. It is especially cruel that her life has ended now, when she had so many more decades ahead of her

  10. Kathie Ricci says:

    Devastating news for this family. Sending prayers to the entire family

  11. Diane Lipartito says:

    This story makes my heart ache and the rest of me quake with rage. This should not have happened. Boeing advertised this plane as practically being able to fly itself with very little training needed for pilots who knew how to fly its predesessor of, except the software of this 737 is different and has a glitch that the FAA has allowed the appropriate parties to drag their feet on. My deepest condolences to Samya and her family along with my horror over the neglect that allowed this tragedy.

  12. Harriet Heywood says:

    So sorry to learn of this tragedy to the Stumo and Nader families. Heartfelt condolences.

  13. Rafael LeBron says:

    My dearest sympathy for the family in this tragic loss of lovely Samya. Also to all other families that lost their loved ones. It is time to mourn the great losses!
    However, I hope the truth is uncovered that can confirm how Boeing and FAA were atrociously negligent in releasing these new model airplanes for use, knowing about the potential horrific design flaws. Now who is to blame?

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