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Vice President Biden's son Beau dies at 46

"Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known."

By Andrew V. Pestano
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Vice President Biden's son Beau dies at 46
Beau Biden took to the stage during the 2008 Democratic National Convention to introduce his father former Delaware Sen. Joe Biden as he ran as the Vice Presidential candidate alongside Illinois Senator and election winner Barack Obama. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, May 31 (UPI) -- Joseph "Beau" Biden III, former Delaware Attorney General, Iraq War veteran and son of Vice President Joe Biden, died Saturday of brain cancer at age 46.

First diagnosed in 2013, he underwent successful treatment at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, but the cancer recurred this spring.

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In 1972, he survived a car crash that killed his mother Neilia and baby sister Naomi, injuring his brother Hunter and himself.

Vice President Biden took the oath of office as a Delaware senator beside Beau's hospital bed in 1973.

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Beau Biden served a year-long tour in the Iraq war in 2008 as a captain in the Delaware Army National Guard. He then served as a U.S. attorney's office prosecutor in Philadelphia for nine years before winning his first election as Delaware Attorney General in 2006 and then again in 2010; he suffered a mild stroke the same year.

Biden planned on running for governor of Delaware in 2016. He is survived by his wife Hallie and their two children Natalie and Hunter; his father Vice President Joe Biden, his stepmother Dr. Jill Biden, his brother Hunter, and his sister Ashley Blazer.

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Beau Biden was taken the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Maryland for treatment earlier this month. He died Saturday evening, surrounded by his family.

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"It is with broken hearts that Hallie, Hunter, Ashley, Jill and I announce the passing of our husband, brother and son, Beau, after he battled brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life. The entire Biden family is saddened beyond words. We know that Beau's spirit will live on in all of us," Vice President Biden said in a statement. "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 the words of the Biden family: Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known."

President Barack Obama released a statement on Biden's death.

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"Michelle and I are grieving tonight," Obama said. "Beau Biden believed the best of us all. For him, and for his family, we swing our lanterns higher. Michelle and I humbly pray for the good Lord to watch over Beau Biden, and to protect and comfort his family here on Earth."

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