Ben Chafin, a Virginia State Senator, Dies With Covid-19

Ben Chafin, a Republican state senator from Virginia, has died of complications of Covid-19, the State Senate’s Republican Caucus confirmed on Friday evening. He had been receiving treatment at the VCU Medical Center in Richmond for two weeks, his family said in a statement.

Mr. Chafin, 60, was first elected to Virginia’s Senate in 2014. Before his time as senator he served as a member of Virginia’s House of Delegates. He was also the owner and operator of a cattle farm in Moccasin Valley, in the state’s southwest.

“Ben was deeply and wholeheartedly committed to the commonwealth, and especially to the people of Southwest Virginia,” said Thomas K. Norment Jr., the State Senate’s Republican leader.

In 2018, Mr. Chafin was one of four Republicans who successfully supported the expansion of Medicaid in Virginia when his party controlled the Senate.

Local news outlets reported that Mr. Chafin’s family will not have a formal burial service. At his behest, they said, the family is requesting food bank donations “in lieu of flowers and other acts of kindness.”

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