Republican Rep. Ron Wright of Texas died Sunday, less than three weeks after announcing he had COVID-19.
Wright, a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, was 67, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
He had been admitted to Baylor Hospital in Dallas along with his wife, Susan, after both were diagnosed with COVID-19. Wright also suffered from lung cancer.
“Congressman Wright will be remembered as a constitutional conservative,” a statement issued by his office read. “He was a statesman, not an ideologue. Ron and Susan dedicated their lives to fighting for individual freedom, Texas values, and above all, the lives of the unborn.”
“As friends, family, and many of his constituents will know, Ron maintained his quick wit and optimism until the very end. Despite years of painful, sometimes debilitating treatment for cancer, Ron never lacked the desire to get up and go to work, to motivate those around him, or to offer fatherly advice,” the statement said.
Many issued statements of condolences.
We are mourning the devastating loss of Congressman Ron Wright. He dedicated his life to serving his community, Texas’s 6th congressional district and our nation.
Please join us in praying for Congressman Wright’s family, staff, and loved ones. pic.twitter.com/erohEauR0r
— House Republicans (@HouseGOP) February 8, 2021
Rest In Peace Congressman Ron Wright. A beloved member of our Texas delegation. May God be with his family.
— Rep. Dan Crenshaw (@RepDanCrenshaw) February 8, 2021
Ron Wright was an incredible father, loving husband & proud Texan. He dedicated his life to serving his community, most recently representing TX-06 in Congress. @RepRonWright faced adversity with strength & grace, inspiring all who knew him. I’m lucky to have called Ron a friend. pic.twitter.com/4Vq7816tid
— Rep Van Taylor (@RepVanTaylor) February 8, 2021
“Ron will be remembered as a tireless fighter for North Texas who brought his conservative principles and love of country to the United States Congress every single day,” Republican Rep. Roger Williams of Texas said.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called Wright a “principled leader who fought to preserve Texas values” and an “exemplary representative of his district.”
“His personal strength and commitment to standing up for the unborn were unwavering,” Abbott said. “He leaves behind a tremendous legacy for future generations of Texans. Cecilia and I send our prayers to Ron’s wife, Susan, his family and loved ones.”
Wright is the first sitting member of Congress to die after contracting COVID-19, according to Newsweek. Republican Rep.-elect Luke Letlow of Louisiana, who had contracted the virus, died in December days before he would have been sworn in.
Wright was among the group of House Republicans who objected to the Electoral College results on Jan. 6, even after the Capitol incursion had taken place.
“Although what we saw yesterday was inexcusable and reprehensible, it doesn’t change the fact that election laws were broken, and evidence of voter fraud has been presented. Both deserve to be investigated. Last night, I objected to certifying the Electoral College votes from Arizona and Pennsylvania to fight for the integrity of our elections and to give certainty to millions of Americans that our electoral process is safe and secure,” he said in a statement posted to his website the day after the incursion.
“Civil discourse, debate, and peaceful protests are vital to our democracy, but violence is never and will never be the answer. God Bless our great nation,” he said.
Wright had informed his constituents on Jan. 21 that he had COVID-19.
“I encourage everyone to keep following CDC guidelines and want to thank all the medical professionals on the front lines who fight this virus head-on every single day,” he said at the time in a statement on his website.
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