Texas Republican Representative Ron Wright died Sunday, about two weeks after contracting. The first sitting member of Congress to die of the virus, Wright had also been undergoing treatment for cancer for years, according to a statement released by his office.
“Congressman Ron Wright passed away peacefully at the age of 67 on February 7, 2021. His wife Susan was by his side and he is now in the presence of their Lord and Savior,” the statement said.
For the past two weeks, he and his wife, Susan Wright, were in Baylor Hospital in Dallas after both were diagnosed with COVID-19. On January 21, Wright released a statement announcing he had tested positive after he had come into contact a week earlier with someone who had the disease.
When he announced his diagnosis, Wright quarantined and described his symptoms as “minor.” “I feel okay and will continue working for the people of the 6th District from home this week,” he said.
Wright’s office said he had been keeping a “rigorous work schedule” on the House floor and at home during his cancer treatment and said he had in particular fought for “individual freedom, Texas values, and above all, the lives of the unborn.”
Wright first won the 6th District seat in 2018 after longtime Congressman Joe Barton retired. The district encompasses Arlington, part of Fort Worth, and areas south of Dallas-Fort Worth.
Although Wright is the first sitting member of Congress to die after contracting the virus, Congressman-elect Luke Letlow also died at the end of December, days before he was supposed to take office. He was 41.
Kathryn Watson contributed to this report.