The chairman of an Arkansas County Republican committee died of complications associated with COVID-19 on Tuesday, less than a month after his organization held an unmasked meeting with other elected leaders.
Steven Farmer, who chaired the Craighead County Republican Committee, died Tuesday after a weeks-long battle with the coronavirus that resulted in an intensive care stay and a ventilator, his daughter and the organization said.
The news comes just three weeks after his committee hosted an event with Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Representative Louis Gohmert (R-TX), who contracted COVID-19 in July, for Reagan Day. Photos from the event show few attendees wearing masks and minimal social distancing. A spokesperson for the committee told the Daily Beast that Farmer, who also served as superintendent of the Jonesboro Human Development Center, did not attend the September 14 event.
“Daddy’s soul sings today even though ours is not. But heartbreak is the price you pay to be blessed enough to experience the kind of love Dad gave and lived every day, ”Farmer’s daughter Audrey Haynie said in a Facebook post Tuesday.
“I’m sorry we couldn’t save you … but I know you are even more perfect now than when you were here.” We will see your face and hear your voice in everyone and everything you have left here ….. in your legacy. Thanks for that. For the gift of you. We will see you. “
Haynie has been chronicling her father’s illness since September 18, posting on Facebook that he was admitted to intensive care the same week as the Reagan Day event. During several posts, Farmer’s daughter described how the GOP County Chairman showed signs of recovery until September 25 – when her condition took a turn for the worse.
“We received a horrible report this morning. The doctor called me and told me he was very worried that daddy won’t be okay, ”Haynie wrote, adding that her dad was starting to show signs of shock. On Monday Haynie posted: “Take a easy breath, daddy. Just breathe, ”while sharing that his EEG showed Farmer had minimal brain activity.
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