Longtime Obama aide dies of cancer

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Longtime Obama aide Michael Robertson died from cancer on Tuesday night, four days before his 42nd birthday.

“Fourteen years ago, a young man named Michael Robertson moved to Chicago to join my staff,” the former president wrote Wednesday in a Facebook post reminiscing about Robertson’s first position as a full-time volunteer for Obama’s Senate race in 2004. “He was driven and dedicated, a constant source of wisdom and kindness, someone who jumped into public service because he believed his efforts could help change this country for the better.”

{mosads}Robertson later became a legislative staffer and then worked on Obama’s presidential campaign, starting in 2007.

Obama wrote that Robertson never lost “that fundamental decency and optimism” he displayed early on in their time together, “even after he was diagnosed with stage IV cancer at just 35 years old.”

Robertson fought off the disease and then rejoined Obama’s White House team. The cancer returned in 2015.

“Last night, we lost Michael after another long battle,” Obama wrote. “But what we remember today is the way he lived his extraordinary life. A life of meaning, purpose, and service.”

“Michelle and I share our condolences and our love with [Robertson’s wife] Sahar, [their son] Wali, and Michael’s entire family, with all the friends who loved him, and with all the Americans for whom he made a difference along the journey,” Obama added.

–Updated at 11:52 a.m.

Tags Cancer President Obama
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