Zain Nadella, 1996-2022: Microsoft CEO’s son remembered for love of music, profound impact on his dad

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and his wife Anu Nadella took pictures with their son Zain. (Photo courtesy of Microsoft and Seattle Children’s)

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and his wife Anunadella’s son Zain Nadella died on Monday at the age of 26, according to a message sent to Microsoft executives.

In a message distributed to Microsoft executives, Seattle Children’s Hospital CEO Jeff Sperring said, “Zain has brought an eclectic taste of music, a bright and sunny smile to his family and everyone who loves him. It will be a memorable one with great joy. ” A team by Kathleen Hogan, Chief Human Resources Officer of the company.

Zain Nadella was suffering from suffocation Intrauterine It left him with cerebral palsy. Satya Nadella wrote about his son in his 2017 book, Press updateI will frankly explain how the birth of Zain required him to grow as a person.

“I was devastated,” he wrote. “But most of the time I was sad about what would happen to me and Anu. Thankfully, Anu helped me understand that it wasn’t what happened to me. It was to deepen our understanding of what happened to Zain and to empathize with his pain and situation while accepting our responsibility as his parents. “

Shortly after birth, Zain was taken to Seattle Children and spent a considerable amount of time at Seattle Children throughout his life receiving treatment and care.Last year, the Nadella family Donated $ 15 Million to Seattle Children To support its activities in neuroscience medicine and mental health care, including the establishment of a Zain Nadella endowed course in pediatric neuroscience.

“As parents, our lives have been shaped by the needs of our children. We hope that by celebrating Zain’s journey, we can improve and innovate the care of future generations in all communities,” Anunadella said. Said in a statement at the time. ..

Nadella also has two daughters. Satya Nadella writes in his book that being Zain’s dad had a great impact on him.

“Zain loves music and has a wide range of hobbies across eras, genres and artists,” Nadella explained in an anecdote. “He loved everything from Leonard Cohen to Abba to Nusrat Fate Ali Khan and always wanted to fill his room with music that suits him and turn over these artists.”

However, Zain was unable to control the music himself, which caused frustration for him and his family. Three high school students heard about this issue and Zain volunteered to create a Windows app that would allow him to easily flip through music by hitting his head against a sensor on the side of his wheelchair.

“The freedom and happiness that the empathy of the three teenagers brought to my son,” Nadella wrote.

Nadella recalled visiting Zain in the intensive care unit after becoming CEO of Microsoft in 2014. He noticed all medical devices running Windows connected to the cloud.

“It clearly reminded us that our work at Microsoft transcended business and made it possible for the fragile boy’s life itself. Also, with the cloud and Windows 10 upgrades, the decision to approach the office. Brought a new level of gravity to us. We should understand this correctly, I remember thinking to myself. ”

Microsoft says the Nadellas are taking the time to personally mourn the loss of Zain.

“I know we all want to support Satya during this difficult time,” Hogan wrote in a message to Microsoft executives. “The best way so far is to keep him and his family in your thoughts and prayers so that privacy and peace can handle such serious losses.”

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