Joseph Biden III affectionately known as Beau,” the son of the U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, and Delaware’s former Attorney General, died from brain cancer, it was announced by the White House today. Beau was 46.
Beau is the second child lost to the vice president. In 1972, VP Biden lost his wife, Neilia, and one-year-old daughter, Naomi, in a car accident during the Christmas season.
Beau, an Iraq war veteran, suffered a stroke in 2010, then in 2013, Beau was admitted to the MD Anderson Medical Center in Houston while he was on vacation. When admitted, it was found that Beau had a brain lesion. He had surgery to remove that lesion.
After his health took a major turn for the worse, Beau spent the last week receiving treatment at Walter Reed Hospital before losing his battle with the brain cancer.
“Michelle and I are grieving tonight. Beau Biden was a friend of ours. His beloved family – Hallie, Natalie, and Hunter – are friends of ours. And Joe and Jill Biden are as good as friends get,” a statement from the Obama White House said. “Beau took after Joe. He studied the law, like his dad, even choosing the same law school. He chased a life of public service, like his dad, serving in Iraq and as Delaware’s Attorney General. Like his dad, Beau was a good, big-hearted devoutly Catholic and faithful man, who made a difference in the lives of all he touched – and he lives on in their hearts.”
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, who served along side the vice president during his time in the Senate, called Beau Biden a “wonderful, strong and courageous man.”
“His life was so rich and it is unspeakably sad to see him leave us far too soon. Beau’s dedication to public service was deep, broad and profound. He embodied the best and most noble traits that his parents sought to instill in him,” Reid said in a statement. “I know Joe is very proud and he should be proud because Beau was simply a joy to know.”
Beau had run for, and won the Attorney General position in 2006, and was expected to run for his father’s vacant Senate seat in 2008, but he declined, and ran and won in the 2010 race for the same attorney position. Beau decided not to run again for Delaware’s Top attorney spot in 2014, and was going make a bid for governorship of that state in 2016.
President Obama said of Beau, “Beau Biden believed the best of us all, for him, and for his family, we swing our lanterns higher.”