Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s son, Zain Nadella, passed away on March 1. Zain, who was 26 years old, was born with cerebral palsy. The company confirmed Zain’s death to its top personnel in an email. The email also asked executives to hold the Nadella family in their thoughts and prayers while giving them space to grieve privately.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s Blog Post on Zain
“One night, during the thirty-sixth week of her pregnancy, Anu noticed that the baby was not moving as much as she was accustomed to. So we went to the emergency room of a local hospital in Bellevue. We thought it would be just a routine checkup, little more than new parent anxiety. In fact, I distinctly remember feeling annoyed by the wait times we experienced in the emergency room. But upon examination, the doctors were alarmed enough to order an emergency cesarean section. Zain was born at 11:29 p.m. on August 13, 1996, all of three pounds. He did not cry,” Nadella wrote.
“Zain was transported from the hospital in Bellevue across Lake Washington to Seattle Children’s Hospital with its state-of-the-art Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Anu began her recovery from the difficult birth. I spent the night with her in the hospital and immediately went to see Zain the next morning. Little did I know then how profoundly our lives would change. Over the course of the next couple of years, we learned more about the damage caused by in utero asphyxiation, and how Zain would require a wheelchair and be reliant on us because of severe cerebral palsy. I was devastated. But mostly I was sad for how things turned out for me and Anu,” The Microsoft CEO further added.
Microsoft has been focusing on designing products that help and serve users with disabilities. In 2021, the Children’s Hospital, where Zain received much of his treatment, joined with the Nadellas to establish the Zain Nadella Endowed Chair in Pediatric Neurosciences, as part of Seattle Children’s Center for Integrative Brain Research, reported Hindustan Times, citing a Bloomberg report.
“Zain will be remembered for his eclectic taste in music, his bright sunny smile and the immense joy he brought to his family and all those who loved him,” Jeff Sperring, CEO of Children’s Hospital, wrote in a message to his Board, which was shared with Microsoft executives.