Speed Reads

R.I.P.

GOP Rep. Ron Wright dies after being hospitalized with COVID-19

Rep. Ron Wright (R-Texas), who tested positive for COVID-19 last month, has died at age 67.

The Republican lawmaker died on Sunday, less than three weeks after announcing his COVID-19 diagnosis. He was hospitalized in Dallas for the past two weeks after contracting the coronavirus and died with his wife, Susan, by his side, his office said in a Monday statement.

Wright had battled lung cancer in the past few years, and his office noted he "kept a rigorous work schedule" as he was treated. In September 2020, he was hospitalized while undergoing cancer treatment.

"As friends, family, and many of his constituents will know, Ron maintained his quick wit and optimism until the very end," his office said. "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."

Wright is the first sitting member of Congress to die from COVID-19.

Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) was among those who paid tribute to Wright on Monday, writing, "Saddened to lose a Texas colleague to COVID-19. I served with Ron on the Education and Labor Committee, and he was a gentleman who cared deeply about public service. My condolences to his family and friends."