Last night, Beau Biden, son of Vice President Joe Biden, died of the brain cancer he had been battling since 2013.
This is Beau Biden at the DNC in 2008, introducing his Dad:
Michelle and I are grieving tonight. Beau Biden was a friend of ours. His beloved family – Hallie, Natalie, and Hunter – are friends of ours. And Joe and Jill Biden are as good as friends get. […]
… 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. He’s as strong as they come, and nothing matters to him more than family. It’s one of the things we love about him. And it is a testament to Joe and Jill – to who they are – that Beau lived a life that was full; a life that mattered; a life that reflected their reverence for family.
This video is a clip from the Democratic National Convention in 2008 … Joe Biden’s introduction to the gathered group (and us at home) … when he was announced as the Vice Presidential nominee. Beau, and the rest of the family, are featured in the clip.
WaPo: Beau Biden, vice president’s son, dies of brain cancer
Joseph Robinette “Beau” Biden III, the son of Vice President Biden and former state attorney general of Delaware, died Saturday after battling brain cancer for several years.
Biden, 46, the oldest son of the vice president … had been admitted recently to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda as he fought the cancer, a battle that his father largely kept private in the last weeks as his son clung to his life.
He had announced plans to run for governor in 2016.
White House Blog: In Memory of Beau Biden
“Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known” –Vice President Joe Biden
“… more than his professional accomplishments, Beau measured himself as a husband, father, son and brother. His absolute honor made him a role model for our family. Beau embodied my father’s saying that a parent knows success when his child turns out better than he did …”
In that 2012 speech, Biden talks about the constant weight of grief. “Just when you think, ‘Maybe I’m going to make it,’ you’re riding down the road and you pass a field, and you see a flower and it reminds you. Or you hear a tune on the radio. Or you just look up in the night. You know, you think, ‘Maybe I’m not going to make it, man.’ Because you feel at that moment the way you felt the day you got the news.”
Biden doesn’t end the speech easy. He doesn’t say the grief ever goes away. He just says, eventually, it makes room for other things, too.
“There will come a day – I promise you, and your parents as well – when the thought of your son or daughter, or your husband or wife, brings a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eye,” Biden says. “It will happen.”