Republican Congressman-elect Luke Letlow, 41, died from the coronavirus Tuesday night, the Monroe News-Star reported.
Letlow tested positive for the coronavirus on Dec. 18. He began to quarantine at his home in the Richland Parish. On Dec. 19 he was admitted to St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe because of his symptoms. Eventually the congressman-elect was transferred to the Ochsner Lousiana State University Health ICU. He remained at LSU, where he eventually passed.
He is survived by his wife Julia and his two young children, three-year-old Jeremiah, and 11-month-old Jacqueline.
"The family appreciates the numerous prayers and support over the past days but asks for privacy during this difficult and unexpected time," the family said in a statement. "A statement from the family along with funeral arrangements will be announced at a later time."
Politicians across the political spectrum paid their respects to Letlow and offered condolences to the family.
Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards shared his statement in a Twitter thread, saying Letlow was taken "far too soon."
Congressman-elect Letlow felt a calling from a young age to serve the people of his home state, working behind the scenes for former Governor Bobby Jindal and serving as chief of staff to Congressman Ralph Abraham, who he was recently elected to succeed. #lagov— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 30, 2020
COVID-19 has taken Congressman-elect Letlow from us far too soon. I am heartbroken that he will not be able to serve our people as a U.S. Representative, but I am even more devastated for his loving family. #lagov— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 30, 2020
I hope all of the people of Louisiana will join Donna and me in praying for Congressman-elect Letlow’s family, especially his wife Julia and their two children, his many friends, and the people of the 5th Congressional District. #lagov— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 30, 2020
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. #lagov— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 30, 2020
I have ordered flags to be flown at half-staff on the day of Congressman-elect Letlow’s funeral. #lagov— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 30, 2020
The Lousiana Delegation, headed by House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, released a statement about Letlow's passing.
"We are devastated to hear of Luke Letlow's passing. Luke had such a positive spirit, and a tremendously bright future ahead of him. He was looking forward to serving the people of Louisiana in Congress, and we were excited to welcome him to our delegation where he was ready to make an even greater impact on our state and our Nation. More than anything, Luke was a loving husband, father, brother, and son, and his family – like so many others who have been affected by this evil disease – needs our prayers," the statement said. "We all join in sending our strongest support to Luke’s wife Julia and their young family, and are keeping them in our prayers."