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Minnesota Rep. Jim Hagedorn dies at 59 after cancer battle

Jim Hagedorn
Posted at 9:10 AM, Feb 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-18 11:10:48-05

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn, a conservative Republican from southern Minnesota who followed his father's footsteps into Congress, has died after a battle with kidney cancer.

He was 59.

Jennifer Carnahan said in a Facebook post Friday that Hagedorn "passed away peacefully" Thursday night.

"Jim loved our country and loved representing the people of southern Minnesota," Carnahan said. "Every moment of every day he lived his dream by serving others. There was no stronger conservative in our state than my husband; and it showed in how he voted, led and fought for our country.

Hagedorn was diagnosed with stage IV kidney cancer in February 2019, shortly after he began his first term, and just a couple of months after he married Carnahan, then state chairwoman for the Minnesota Republican Party.

He underwent immunotherapy at the Mayo Clinic.

The treatment knocked back his cancer enough that doctors felt safe taking out his affected kidney in 2020, which he said removed an estimated 99% of the cancer in his body.

But he announced in July 2021 that his cancer had returned.

According to the Associated Press, Gov. Tim Walz, under state law, must call a special election to fill the vacancy.

"Jim lived a legacy of service to our state and our country. Please join us in praying for Jim and his loved ones in this time of sorrow," Minnesota GOP Chairman David Hann said in a statement.