scorecardA Washington state lawmaker who said he contracted COVID-19 while visiting El Salvador has died
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A Washington state lawmaker who said he contracted COVID-19 while visiting El Salvador has died

Sarah Al-Arshani   

A Washington state lawmaker who said he contracted COVID-19 while visiting El Salvador has died
PoliticsPolitics1 min read
Sen. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, wipes off a microphone before speaking on the Senate floor in January 2021 at the Capitol in Olympia, Washington.    AP Photo/Ted S. Warren
  • A Washington state lawmaker said he fell ill with COVID-19 while on a trip to El Salvador last month.
  • State Senator Doug Ericksen's family announced that he died on Friday.

Washington state Sen. Doug Ericksen, who said he fell ill with COVID-19 while in El Salvador last month, has died at age 52, his family announced in a statement Saturday.

"We are heartbroken to share that our husband and father passed away on Friday, Dec. 17. Please keep our family in your prayers and thank you for continuing to respect our privacy in this extremely difficult time," the statement, issued by the Washington State Senate Republican Caucus, said.

The statement did not specify the cause of death.

Ericksen, a Republican, was elected to the Washington state Senate in 2010. He previously served six terms in the state's House.

In November, Ericksen told KIRO that he was unable to leave El Salvador after testing positive for COVID-19 and asked his GOP colleagues to send him monoclonal antibody treatments.

On November 19, former state Rep. Luanne Van Werven said a medevac flight was arranged for Ericksen to Florida and that he was in stable condition at a hospital, but no updates on his condition or whereabouts were given afterwards.

State Senate Republican Leader John Braun said in a statement he was "deeply saddened" by the news of Ericksen's death.

"My prayers and thoughts are with his wife, Tasha, and his daughters. Doug could be larger than life and our caucus will miss him greatly. He was passionate about his duties as a member of the Legislature and dedicated to his constituents," Braun said.

Ericksen was a staunch advocate against COVID-19 vaccine mandates. It was unclear if he was vaccinated.

In a statement, Gov. Jay Inslee said: "Trudi and I send our deep condolences to Sen. Doug Ericksen's family, friends and colleagues. Our hearts are with them."

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