- The Washington Times - Saturday, May 30, 2015

Beau Biden, the 46-year-old son of Vice President Joseph R. Biden, died Saturday night after a battle with brain cancer.

A former attorney general of Delaware, Mr. Biden was an Iraq war veteran. His death was announced by his father Saturday night.

“It is with broken hearts that Hallie, Hunter, Ashley, Jill and I announce the passing of our husband, brother and son, Beau, after he battled brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life,” Mr. Biden said in a statement. “The entire Biden family is saddened beyond words.”

President Obama said he and first lady Michelle Obama were grieving.

“Beau Biden was a friend of ours,” Mr. Obama said. “His beloved family — Hallie, Natalie, and Hunter — are friends of ours. The Bidens have more family then they know. And they have a family right here in the White House, where hundreds of hearts ache tonight.”

On Sunday afternoon, Mr. Obama and the first lady visited the Bidens at the vice president’s home at the Naval Observatory in Washington to express their condolences.

The Obamas also canceled a White House reception Sunday that was to have benefited Ford’s Theatre. A White House official said they did so “out of respect” for the Biden family.

As Beau Biden’s illness worsened, the vice president’s office said last week that he was receiving treatment at Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

In 2013, he was admitted to a Houston hospital after reportedly feeling disoriented and weak. He underwent surgery for a brain lesion.

The younger Biden was elected as Delaware’s attorney general in 2006. As a captain in the Delaware National Guard, he served in Iraq for one year, and also worked as a prosecutor in the U.S. attorney’s office in Philadelphia from 1997 to 2002.

The vice president said his son’s spirit “will live on in all of us — especially through his brave wife, Hallie, and two remarkable children, Natalie and Hunter.”

“His absolute honor made him a role model for our family,” the vice president said. “Beau embodied my father’s saying that a parent knows success when his child turns out better than he did. In the words of the Biden family: Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known.”

Said the president: “For all that Beau Biden achieved in his life, nothing made him prouder; nothing made him happier; nothing claimed a fuller focus of his love and devotion than his family. Just like his dad.”

“Joe is one of the strongest men we’ve ever known,” Mr. Obama said. “He’s as strong as they come, and nothing matters to him more than family.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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