White House Loses 'One of the Best' in Cycling Accident

Jake Brewer was killed during cancer fundraiser
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 21, 2015 12:56 AM CDT
Jake Brewer's LinkedIn profile picture.   (LinkedIn)

(Newser) – President Obama has lost one of his top technology advisers—and Jake Brewer's colleagues say the world has lost a good man with great ideas. The 34-year-old senior policy adviser to the Office of the Chief Technology Officer was killed on Saturday when his bike went out of control during a cycling event in Maryland to raise money for a cancer charity, the Washington Post reports. In a statement tweeted by the White House, President Obama said he was "heartbroken" by the tragic loss. "Simply put, Jake was one of the best," he said. "Armed with a brilliant mind, a big heart, and an insatiable desire to give back, Jake devoted his life to empowering people and making government work better for them."

Police say Brewer was pronounced dead at the scene after being hit by an oncoming vehicle during the Ride to Conquer Cancer, the New York Daily News reports. He worked in several key roles at Change.org before joining the Obama administration, where he worked on initiatives that included last month's White House Demo Day for tech entrepreneurs, reports TechCrunch. He had a 2-year-old daughter and his wife, Mary Katharine Ham, is pregnant with their second child, the Daily News reports. "I lost part of my heart and the father of my sweet babies. I don't have to tell most of you how wonderful he was. It was self-evident," she wrote in a moving Instagram post. "I will strive and pray not to feel I was cheated of many years with him, but cherish the gift of the years I had. ... Please pray that he can see us and we'll all make him proud. God, I love him." (Read more White House stories.)

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