New Jersey Lieutenant Gov. Sheila Oliver Dies Unexpectedly

New Jersey Lieutenant Gov. Sheila Oliver, 71, died unexpectedly on Tuesday after being rushed to the hospital for what has been described as an “undisclosed medical issue.”

Oliver, who was serving as acting governor while Gov. Phil Murphy (D) was out of state, was taken to the Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, her spokesperson Mahen Gunaratna confirmed on Monday, vaguely reporting that Oliver was receiving “medical care.” On Tuesday, her family released a statement announcing Oliver’s passing.

“It is with incredible sadness and a heavy heart that we announce the passing of Honorable Sheila Y. Oliver, Lieutenant Governor of the State of New Jersey,” the statement reads. “She was not only a distinguished public servant but also our cherished daughter, sister, aunt, friend, and hero.”

“As we come to terms with this profound loss, we kindly request that you respect the privacy of the Oliver family during this difficult time as they grieve their beloved Sheila,” it continues, adding that details on memorial arrangements will be provided “in due course.”

“May her memory be a source of comfort and strength to all who knew her,” the family’s statement adds:

Gov. Murphy also asked all to keep the Oliver family in their prayers.

“Tammy and I, and our children, are incredibly saddened to learn of the passing of our dear friend, colleague, and partner in government, @LtGovOliver,” he wrote, sharing his full statement on social media. “We ask that you all keep the Oliver family and all those who loved her in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”

“Sheila Oliver was a trailblazer,” New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) said in a statement posted to social media. “She knocked down barriers for women of color in government, climbing the ranks to the highest levels.”

“On behalf of New York City, I offer our condolences to her friends, family, and the people of New Jersey who she so dutifully served,” he added.

“Thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver on her passing. She leaves behind a long legacy of public service to her community, county, and state,” New Jersey State Sen. Doug Steinhardt (R) added.

This story is developing.

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