Virginia Congressman Donald McEachin dies at age 61 after battling cancer

  • Virginia Representative Donald McEachin died Monday after battling colon cancer. He was 61.
  • McEachin, a Democrat, had just been re-elected to a fourth term earlier this month.
  • “To the very end, Don was a fighter,” Senator Mark Warner said in a statement Monday.

Representative Donald McEachin, a Democrat from Virginia, died Monday after battling colon cancer, according to his congressional office.

He was 61 years old.

“We are all devastated by the passing of our boss and friend, Congressman Donald McEachin,” said McEachin Chief of Staff Tara Rountree. said in a statement on Monday night. “Bravely, we’ve watched him fight and triumph over the secondary effects of his 2013 colon cancer for years. 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.”

Democratic Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, who served as Commonwealth governor from 2002 to 2006, fondly remembered McEachin on Monday.

“To the end, Don was a fighter,” Warner said in a statement. “While he has battled cancer and endured other trials in recent years, he never lost his focus on social and environmental justice. Tonight Virginia lost a great leader and I lost a dear friend.”

Democratic Senator Tim Kaine, also a former governor of Virginia, recalled first meeting McEachin in 1985 and spoke of his relationship with the congressman in memory.

“Our kids were the same age, we shared a statewide ticket with Mark Warner [in 2001]and we’ve been together in the Virginia federal delegation for years,” Kaine said in a statement. “I was last with him three weeks ago on election night, celebrating his victory.”

“He was a gentle giant, a compassionate champion for underdogs, a climate warrior, a Christian example, an understanding father, a proud husband, a loyal brother,” he added.

Democratic Representative Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, recently re-elected to the 7th District, made a comment about her colleague’s legacy.

“Tonight I mourn my friend, colleague and mentor, Congressman Donald McEachin. He was a good man who tried to make others feel important and heard, whether in the courtroom, the General Assembly, the United States Congress or just at a quiet time.” ,” she wrote on Twitter.

“The passing of Congressman McEachin leaves a deep void here in Virginia,” she continued. “But his example of leadership, his generosity of spirit and his dedication to doing good in the world and righting wrongs will endure for all whose lives he has touched, including mine.”

Speaking of McEachin’s character in a statement, House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries of New York stated that the legislator “would be sorely missed in the Caucus, Congress and the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

“Don brought a servant’s heart, a fierce passion and a radiant smile to everything he did,” said Jeffries.

McEachin had just been re-elected to a fourth term representing the Commonwealth’s 4th congressional district, which includes the state capital, Richmond, and parts of suburban Henrico and Chesterfield counties, as well as the Tri-Cities region and part of Hampton Roads .

During his tenure on Capitol Hill, the congressman was committed to addressing environmental justice and climate change, serving on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Natural Resources Committee, and Select Committee on Climate Crisis.

Prior to his election to Congress, McEachin, a lawyer, served in the Virginia House of Delegates from 1996 to 2002 and again from 2006 to 2008. He served in the Virginia Senate from 2008 to 2017.

In 2001, McEachin was the Democratic nominee for Attorney General, but lost the election to Republican Jerry Kilgore.

The congressman is survived by his wife, Colette McEachin, the Commonwealth attorney for the City of Richmond, and their three adult children.

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