Terrible news. The day before an historic election, Barack Obama's grandmother, the woman who raised him for a good portion of his youth, has passed away. He took time off the campaign trail in the final weeks to say his last goodbyes. Unfortunately she could not make it to Election Day.
This was a woman who went from the secretarial pool to the Vice President of a bank, a woman who worked on assembly lines during World War II. Here's the statement from Barack Obama and his sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng:
"It is with great sadness that we announce that our grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, has died peacefully after a battle with cancer. She was the cornerstone of our family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility. She was the person who encouraged and allowed us to take chances. She was proud of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and left this world with the knowledge that her impact on all of us was meaningful and enduring. Our debt to her is beyond measure.
"Our family wants to thank all of those who sent flowers, cards, well-wishes, and prayers during this difficult time. It brought our grandmother and us great comfort. Our grandmother was a private woman, and we will respect her wish for a small private ceremony to be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, we ask that you make a donation to any worthy organization in search of a cure for cancer."
...I should also note that the Nevada State Director of the Obama campaign died from a massive heart attack at the age of just 44. Much of my volunteer efforts for Obama supported Nevada. This is also a tragic loss.
...It is sadly typical of the knuckle-draggers in the California Republican Party that they picked today to file a lawsuit over Obama's travel to Hawaii to visit Mrs. Dunham for the last time. The RNC jumped on this lawsuit filing today as well.