April Freeman death: Florida congressional candidate April Freeman dies unexpectedly.
April Freeman, a Democrat running for Congress in Florida, has died suddenly of an apparent heart attack, according to her husband. She was 54.
David Freeman announced the death on Monday, saying that it occurred the day before.
“Its with great sadness that I feel I must inform all of you that my beloved wife April passed away suddenly last night,” Mr Freeman wrote in a Facebook post. “To all of her family and friends here on Facebook, my heart aches with you.”
Freeman was in the middle of her third run for Congress, and was competing against Republican Greg Steube to take the 17th district seat of Representative Tom Rooney.
The candidate had previously attempted to unseat Mr Rooney, with congressional campaigns in 2016 aimed at the seat. In 2014, Freeman also attempted to win the 19th district, but lost that campaign to Representative Curt Clawson.
Freeman had previously worked as a TV and film producer, but put that career aside in order to run for Congress. She relied on monetary support from her husband, who is a union pipe fitter and HVAC specialist.
Florida Democratic Party Chair Terrie Rizzo expressed his sadness at the news, and praised her dedication to her campaign.
“April put her heart and soul into her community — and was dedicated to making a better future for all Floridians,” Ms Rizzo said. “Just last night she was in the office, making calls and working to get out the vote”.
The prepared statement continued: “Her work ethic and passion was an inspiration to all of us. It is a tremendous loss to the Democratic Party and to all who knew her. Our hearts break for her family and love ones, who are grieving her loss.”
Freeman was running a long shot campaign to represent the district, which covers a portion of the state’s eastern shoreline as well as a large swath of land further inland from there.
The district is considered to have around a 13 percentage point advantage for Republicans, meaning that a Democrat would have to attract an unusual level of support in the district above normal levels to have a chance at competing. In 2016, Freeman lost her attempt to take the seat handily, with Mr Rooney getting 61.8 per cent of the vote compared to Freeman’s 34.2 per cent.