Member of Congress Re-Elected Earlier This Month Dies at 61


After getting re-elected in the 2022 midterm election, Democratic Rep. Donald McEachin of Virginia passed away on Monday after a long battle with cancer.

McEachin had been representing Virginia’s 4th District, which covers the Richmond area, since 2016, Politico reported.

He had been battling cancer since 2013.

“We are all devastated at the passing of our boss and friend, Congressman Donald McEachin. Valiantly, for years now, we have watched him fight and triumph over the secondary effects of his colorectal cancer from 2013. Tonight, he lost that battle, and the people of Virginia’s Fourth Congressional District lost a hero who always, always fought for them and put them first,” wrote Tara Rountree, McEachin’s chief of staff, in a statement announcing the congressman’s death and posted on the congressman’s Twitter account.

“Until a new representative is elected, our office will remain open and continue to serve our constituents. The family asks for privacy at this time. Arrangements will be announced over the next few days,” the statement concluded.

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The third African American representative to serve Virginia in the U.S. House, McEachin was 61 when he passed away.

In the wake of his death, many of his fellow congressmen have commemorated McEachin and honored his legacy.

“Tonight, I am mourning my friend, colleague, and mentor Congressman Donald McEachin. He was a good man who endeavored to make others feel important and heard whether in the courtroom, the General Assembly, the U.S. Congress, or simply in a quiet moment,” Democratic Virginia Rep. Abigail Spanberger tweeted.

“Up until the very end, Don McEachin was a fighter. Even though he battled cancer and faced other trials in recent years, he never lost his focus on social and environmental justice. Tonight, Virginia has lost a great leader and I have lost a great friend,” Democratic Virginia Sen. Mark Warner tweeted.

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McEachin had won his district earlier in November with 64.94 percent of the vote, the Virginia Department of Elections reported.

His Republican opponent, Leon Benjamin Sr., received 34.89 percent of the district’s vote.

But now with McEachin’s passing, there will have to be a special election to fill his now-vacant seat, Fox News reported.

Until that special election is held, the new Congress will begin with McEachin’s seat empty.

It will be up to Virginia GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin to choose a date for the special election, Politico reported.

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