Colorado GOP Leader Hugh McKean Dies Suddenly At 55

Colorado GOP Leader Hugh McKean Dies Suddenly At 55

Colorado House Minority Leader Hugh McKean (R) died suddenly on Sunday morning in his home.

McKean passed away from a heart attack at the age of 55, according to the Larimar County Coroner’s Office.

“It is with great sadness we announce the sudden passing of House Minority Leader Hugh McKean. Hugh was fiercely passionate about serving the great state of Colorado and will be missed dearly,” Colorado House Republicans shared on Twitter. “Funeral services are being planned and details will be made public once finalized.”

It is with great sadness we announce the sudden passing of House Minority Leader Hugh McKean. Hugh was fiercely passionate about serving the great state of Colorado and will be missed dearly. Funeral services are being planned and details will be made public once finalized. pic.twitter.com/Yw7ARMTnJv

— Colorado House Republicans (@COHouseGOP) October 30, 2022

Colorado Governor Jared Polis (D) shared a statement regarding McKean’s passing on Sunday.

I am devastated to hear of Minority Leader Hugh McKean’s sudden passing. Sending thoughts and prayers to all of Hugh’s loved ones and take comfort knowing his legacy will be felt in Colorado for years to come

— Governor Jared Polis (@GovofCO) October 30, 2022

“I am devastated to hear of Minority Leader Hugh McKean’s sudden passing. A family man and a true public servant, Minority Leader McKean had a knack for making everyone feel like they were the most important person in the room,” Polis shared in a statement with KKTV.

“Minority Leader McKean cared deeply for his constituents, always had time for a conversation or a laugh, and truly worked every day to build a better future for every Coloradan. As a dad myself, I can’t imagine the pain his children and family are feeling at this difficult time. We are sending thoughts and prayers to all of Hugh’s loved ones and take comfort knowing his legacy will be felt in Colorado for years to come,” he added.

Roger Hudson, McKean’s deputy chief of staff, told The Denver Post that McKean “had been complaining of pain on the left side of his body.” The minority leader thought that the health issue was related to recent work at his home, but it reportedly worsened.

Hudson was notified on Sunday morning and arrived at McKean’s home after an ambulance had been called.

McKean had last been at a campaign rally on Saturday for Republican Senate candidate Joe O’Dea.

“Devastated to learn about the passing of our friend Hugh McKean today. Even this weekend his boundless optimism, kindness, and empathy were on full display at our rally in Loveland,” O’Dea tweeted.

“We need more reasonable leaders like him. Celeste and I are praying for his family during this difficult time,” he added.

Devastated to learn about the passing of our friend Hugh McKean today.

Even this weekend his boundless optimism, kindness, and empathy were on full display at our rally in Loveland. 1/2

— Joe O’Dea (@ODeaForColorado) October 30, 2022

State Rep. Yadira Caraveo (D) also offered condolences.

“I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of Minority Leader Hugh McKean,” she tweeted. “Throughout my time serving with him, he always demonstrated his huge heart and was always there with a word of encouragement and an I love you. My thoughts are with his family.”

I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of Minority Leader Hugh McKean. Throughout my time serving with him, he always demonstrated his huge heart and was always there with a word of encouragement and an I love you. My thoughts are with his family.

— Dr. Yadira Caraveo (@YadiraCaraveo) October 30, 2022

McKean was running unopposed in his re-election campaign as state House representative. The Colorado Secretary of State Office said that a committee established by the Larimer County Republican Party would fill his vacant seat, according to KKTV.

The GOP state minority leader was elected in 2016 to represent Colorado District 51. He was appointed the party’s leader in 2020.

Before serving in the state’s House of Representatives, McKean served as a Loveland city councilman. He leaves behind two adult sons.

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