published Monday, August 4th, 2014

Former White House press secretary Jim Brady dies

  • photo
    This March 30, 1981 file photo shows a U.S. secret service agent with an automatic weapon watches over James Brady, the president's secretary, after being wounded in an attempt on the life of President Ronald Reagan in Washington. A Washington, D.C. policeman, Thomas Delahanty, lies to the left after also being shot. A Brady family spokeswoman says Brady has died at 73. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds)
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

WASHINGTON (AP) — James Brady, the White House press secretary gravely wounded during the 1981 assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, died Monday, his family announced. Brady was 73.

"We are heartbroken to share the news that our beloved Jim "Bear" Brady has passed away after a series of health issues," Brady's family said in a statement. "His wife, Sarah, son, Scott, and daughter, Missy, are so thankful to have had the opportunity to say their farewells." The statement did not say where Brady was when he passed away.

Brady undertook a personal crusade for gun control after suffering the devastating bullet wound to his head outside the Washington Hilton Hotel on March 30, 1981.

A federal law requiring a background check on handgun buyers bears Brady's name.

Although Brady returned to the White House only briefly, he was allowed to keep the title of presidential press secretary and his White House salary until Reagan left office in January 1989.

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence is named in his honor, as is the White House press briefing room.

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