Congresswoman Mary Peltola’s (D-AK) husband was killed in a plane crash on Wednesday morning in Alaska.
On X, the head of staff for the Democratic lawmaker revealed the unexpected death of Eugene Peltola Jr.
“We are devastated to share that Mary’s husband, Eugene Peltola Jr.—‘Buzzy’ to all of us who knew and loved him—passed away earlier this morning following a plane accident in Alaska,” said Anton McParland in a statement.
“He was one of those people that was obnoxiously good at everything. He had a delightful sense of humor that lightened the darkest moments,” the statement continued. “He was definitely the cook in the family. And family was most important to him. He was completely devoted to his parents, kids, siblings, extended family, and friends – and he simply adored Mary. We are heartbroken for the family’s loss.”
Rep. Peltola is one of the few Native Americans serving in Congress, and he is from western Alaska. After serving in the state legislature for a total of three terms between 1999 and 2009, she was finally elected to Congress just last year. She joined the Bethel City Council and then became a tribal court judge for the Orutsararmiut Native Council.
After the news broke, Peltola’s coworkers descended upon X to express their condolences.
“I am so terribly sorry, @Rep_Peltola. Our hearts are with you and your family today,” Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) said.
“I am so sorry for your loss, @Rep_Peltola. You and your family are in my prayers,” wrote Rep. John James (R-MI).