Obama campaign staffer dies after collapsing
July 13th, 2012
08:19 PM ET
2 years ago

Obama campaign staffer dies after collapsing

(CNN) – President Barack Obama on Friday called the family of a campaign staffer who collapsed in the Chicago headquarters and later died, Obama's campaign said.

The staffer, 29-year-old Alex Okrent, worked in the campaign's advertising department, the Chicago Sun-Times said in a report, which campaign officials acknowledged was accurate.

The president offered his condolences to Okrent's family and spoke with other members of his campaign staff in a conference call, his campaign said.

Obama was campaigning in Virginia on Friday.

Okrent had worked on Obama's 2008 presidential campaign and his 2004 U.S. Senate campaign, the Sun-Times report said.

on Friday evening, Obama tweeted, "A beloved member of our campaign family, Alex Okrent, passed away today. Our prayers are with his loved ones. We will miss you, Alex. -bo." Obama's organization has said the initials indicate the tweet is from the president.

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann Romney, acknowledged Okrent in a tweet after the news emerged.

“Ann & I were deeply saddened to learn of the death of Alex Okrent,” he tweeted. “Prayers are with Alex’s loved ones and the entire Obama campaign team.”

David Axlerod, a senior adviser to Obama’s campaign, tweeted in reply to Romney: “Thank you, governor. Alex was a beloved member of our team. It's been a very emotional day.”

No further details were immediately available.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. RNC is out of touch with Latinos, Women and Middle Class Americans

    Sad news r.i.p Alex.

    July 13, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  2. Four and The Door

    Way too young. I'm sure there are many devastated people in Chicago and I am sorry for their grief.

    July 13, 2012 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  3. love344@tiscali.it

    RIP, Alex

    July 13, 2012 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  4. Iamnotfooled

    My condolences to the family of Alex Okrent. We should honor him by acting civil to each other like the two campaigns did here. This is what America is all about, caring for one another.

    July 13, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  5. zago

    Peace be upon you dude. You had a noble struggle.

    July 13, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  6. lib

    how sad and so young. Today it seems we parents have to worry more about our children than ourselves. COndolences to his family, friends and all the Obama campaign staff, What a shock. God Bless!

    July 13, 2012 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  7. Etch-A-Sketch Mitt RobMe Say_Lying About his Work History @ BAIN while Collecting Salaries for DOING-NOTHING

    SORRY @ Team Obama!!!

    my condolences........

    July 13, 2012 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  8. Leigh2VA

    Politics don't really matter now, do they? 29 is far too young to die. May he be at peace and condolences to his family. Very sad and troubling for his parents to lose their son.

    July 13, 2012 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  9. ThinkAgain

    The son of a friend of mine recently unexpectedly collapsed and died; turned out to be a previously-undiagnosed heart condition. My condolences to Okrent's family, friends and the entire Obama team.

    July 13, 2012 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  10. proudmemberofglobalzero

    This is truly a sad day. I, as a parent could not fathom any one of my children going before me. My thoughts are with this young mans family, the Obama Campaign staff and the rest of his friends. Peace be with you!

    July 13, 2012 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  11. Vote the Tea Party OUT in 2012

    29 years old...so young...may he rest in peace.

    July 13, 2012 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  12. 333maxwell

    Condolences to the families.. not like they know me.. but I am reading this, and it is never good when such a young life is ended so suddenly.

    July 13, 2012 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  13. A

    Deeply sadenned

    July 13, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  14. n2video

    I really did not expect Romney to have the humanity to express condolences. I am glad that he did. Now, Mitt, how about those SEC papers?

    July 13, 2012 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  15. RF Burns

    Though I'm not an Obama suporter but I am saddened by the news. 29 is way to young to die. My thoughts are with his family and friends.

    July 13, 2012 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
  16. d

    That is so sad...to young.

    July 13, 2012 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  17. RoadRunner, Albuquerque, NM

    He died doing what he believed in, and I hold him in the highest respect. My condolences to his family, friends and loved ones.

    July 13, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  18. Scuba127

    Good on Romney to rise above politics and pay his respects to Mr. Okrent. Even if you disagree with his politics you have to respect him for that.

    July 13, 2012 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  19. pditty

    So someone has to die before American politions have a respectful exchange. 29, way to young. very sad.

    July 13, 2012 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  20. PREACH

    this job obviously was hard on the young man REALLY SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS MY CONDOLENCES

    July 14, 2012 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  21. Califan

    Rest in peace, young man.

    July 14, 2012 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  22. Name. Tony

    God bless his family and the Obama team this is sad day for us that supportting Obama .

    July 14, 2012 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  23. edvhou812

    Scary to hear of a young person die suddenly. And not from an accident, but from something to do with health. Makes you realize that anything can happen to any of us...at any time.

    July 14, 2012 02:09 am at 2:09 am |
  24. JL. Taylor

    May God keep you young man.

    July 14, 2012 02:26 am at 2:26 am |
  25. Kassie C.

    I worked with Alex in Oregon on Obama's '08 Primary race. He was intensely driven and passionate about the candidate...and campaign. He was a rising young star in the political world and will be sorely missed.

    July 14, 2012 02:54 am at 2:54 am |
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