A Congressman-elect from Louisiana died from coronavirus complications just days before the swearing-in ceremony at the U.S. Capitol.
The family of Republican Luke Letlow confirmed that the 41-year-old died on Tuesday.
"The family appreciates the numerous prayers and support over the past days but asks for privacy during this difficult and unexpected time," said Andrew Bautsch, a spokesman for Letlow. "A statement from the family along with funeral arrangements will be announced at a later time."
Letlow announced that he had tested positive for the coronavirus on Dec. 18 and said that he was quarantining at home. A day later, he was admitted to a hospital in Monroe, and four days after that he was moved into the Intensive Care Unit at a hospital in Shreveport.
He had won the congressional seat representing a district including the cities of Monroe and Alexandria after working as the chief of staff for Republican Ralph Abraham who held the seat before him. Letlow had also worked for the administration of former Gov. Bobby Jindal. Letlow was from the small town of Start in Richland Parish.
He is survived by his wife, Julia Barnhill Letlow, and two young children.
Dr. G.E. Ghali of Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport told The Advocate that Letlow suffered a cardiac event that led to his death. He added that Letlow had no underlying conditions that made his death more likely.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards offered his condolences in a tweet from his account.
It is with heavy hearts that @FirstLadyOfLA and I offer our condolences to Congressman-elect Luke Letlow’s family o… https://t.co/kO51X0Lruc— John Bel Edwards (@John Bel Edwards)1609296829.0
"It is with heavy hearts that @FirstLadyOfLA and I offer our condolences to Congressman-elect Luke Letlow's family on his passing after a battle with COVID-19," he tweeted.
"Louisiana has lost more than 7,300 people to COVID-19 since March, and each one of them leaves a tremendous hole in our state," he added.
Edwards said that he had ordered the flag to be flown at half-staff on the day of Letlow's funeral.
Here's a local news report about Letlow's death:
Congressman elect Letlow dies of COVID-19 www.youtube.com