The body was “positively identified” as 31-year-old Malary on Saturday.
While authorities discovered Malary’s apartment had been left unlocked, police said they found nothing at her home or car to indicate foul play. No cause of death has been released yet.
Malary was a recognized LGBTQ+ rights activist around the Chicago area. She was a Community Outreach Specialist at the Chicago Therapy Collective, a group dedicated to supporting mental health in the transgender community, according to her LinkedIn.
Malary also spent time as a communications associate for Equality Illinois and interning for the AIDS Foundation of Chicago.
“The outpouring of love, care, and community response reflects the deep impact of Elise’s love and advocacy on so many of us,” The statement said. “We hope that you are taking tender care of one another.”
Malary’s impact on the transgender community is being remembered by members of government as well.
The governor pledged to continue to “make Illinois welcoming and inclusive for everyone.”
“I’m heartbroken to share that Elise is no longer alive and with us,” Hadden said. “Our community begin to process her loss and our grief. Elise Malary will be missed terribly.”
Malary’s cause and manner of death are pending, according to WLS. The Evanston Police Department’s investigation is ongoing.