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Obituaries

Vice President Biden’s son dies at 46

Beau Biden

Delaware Atty. Gen. Beau Biden nominates his father for vice president at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

(Nancy Stone, Chicago Tribune)

Joseph “Beau” Biden, the son of Vice President Joe Biden and a promising young figure in Democratic Party politics, died, his father said Saturday. He was 46.

Biden had fought brain cancer, according to a statement from the vice president. He didn’t say where or when his son died.

Earlier this month, the vice president’s office said Beau Biden was undergoing treatment for an undisclosed condition at Walter Reed Medical Center near Washington.

The death of the eldest of his three children is the latest personal tragedy to befall the vice president, whose wife and infant daughter were killed in a car accident just a month after he was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1972. Beau and his brother, Hunter, were also seriously injured in the crash, which nearly led Joe Biden to quit his young political career just as it was beginning.

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The complete statement from the vice president follows:

“It is with broken hearts that Hallie, Hunter, Ashley, Jill and I announce the passing of our husband, brother and son, Beau, after he battled brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life.

“The entire Biden family is saddened beyond words. We know that Beau’s spirit will live on in all of us, especially through his brave wife, Hallie, and two remarkable children, Natalie and Hunter.

“Beau’s life was defined by service to others. As a young lawyer, he worked to establish the rule of law in war-torn Kosovo. A major in the Delaware National Guard, he was an Iraq War veteran and was awarded the Bronze Star. As Delaware’s attorney general, he fought for the powerless and made it his mission to protect children from abuse.

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“More than his professional accomplishments, Beau measured himself as a husband, father, son and brother. His absolute honor made him a role model for our family. Beau embodied my father’s saying that a parent knows success when his child turns out better than he did.

“In the words of the Biden family: Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known.”


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