Minnesota Republican Rep. Jim Hagedorn dead at age 59

Minnesota Rep. Jim Hagedorn died Thursday at the age of 59, his wife announced.

Hagedorn, a Republican, had represented Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives since 2019.

“It is with a broken heart, shattered spirit and overwhelming sadness I share my husband Congressman Jim Hagedorn passed away peacefully last night,” Hagedorn’s wife, former Minnesota Republican Party Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan, wrote in a Facebook post Friday.

“Jim loved our country and loved representing the people of southern Minnesota. Every moment of every day he lived his dream by serving others,” her post added. “There was no stronger conservative in our state than my husband; and it showed in how he voted, led and fought for our country.”

The post did not reveal a cause of death. However, The New York Times reported that he had been diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2019.

While doctors were able to remove most of the cancer using immunotherapy treatment, Hagedorn said in July that the cancer had returned, according to WCCO-TV.

Last month, Hagedorn said he had tested positive for COVID-19, but was experiencing “very mild symptoms.”

As news of his passing spread, condolences poured in.

Hagedorn was “a strong and effective legislator for the great people of Southern Minnesota,” former President Donald Trump said in a statement, KEYC reported.

“Our hearts go out to his wife Jennifer and all his loved ones in this difficult time. Jim lived a legacy of service to our state and our country,” Minnesota GOP Chairman David Hann added. “Please join us in praying for Jim and his loved ones in this time of sorrow.”

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota called Hagedorn a “friend.”

Fellow Minnesota Sen. Tina Smith, also a Democrat, expressed similar sentiments.

In her Facebook post, Hagedorn’s wife said he will be missed by a great many people.

“Jim was a loving husband, son, brother, uncle, cousin, nephew, friend, brother-in-law, son-in-law, Vikings, Penguins and Twins fan and will be missed and remembered by many,” she wrote.

“While nothing can accurately prepare you for the unimaginable pain, intense sorrow, suffocating grief and seemingly never-ending emptiness that engulfs the entire body, soul and spirit when your forever love passes away; at least we can smile knowing Jim is smiling from heaven encouraging us to keep chasing our dreams, loving unconditionally and fighting for the country.”

With Hagedorn’s passing, the U.S. House currently consists of 222 Democrats and 211 Republicans, Fox News reported. A special election to fill his seat is scheduled for Aug. 9.