WASHINGTON (AP) — James Brady, the White House press secretary gravely wounded during the 1981 assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, died Monday, his family announced. Brady was 73.

James Brady

This March 30, 2011 file photo shows former White House press secretary James Brady who was left paralyzed in the Reagan assassination attempt during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington marking the 30th anniversary of the shooting. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

“We are heartbroken to share the news that our beloved Jim “Bear” Brady has passed away after a series of health issues,” Brady’s family said in a statement. “His wife, Sarah, son, Scott, and daughter, Missy, are so thankful to have had the opportunity to say their farewells.” The statement did not say where Brady was when he passed away.

Brady undertook a personal crusade for gun control after suffering the devastating bullet wound to his head outside the Washington Hilton Hotel on March 30, 1981.

A federal law requiring a background check on handgun buyers bears Brady’s name.

Although Brady returned to the White House only briefly, he was allowed to keep the title of presidential press secretary and his White House salary until Reagan left office in January 1989.

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence is named in his honor, as is the White House press briefing room.