After week of bad press, FitzGerald assures supporters his son is still cancer-free

Democratic gubernatorial nominee found in car one early morning with a woman who was not his wife.
MCT Regional News
Aug 8, 2014

Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ed FitzGerald and his wife Shannon sent an email to supporters this morning announcing that their eldest son, a cancer survivor of about four years, had periodic tests this week with results that have come back “fine.”

The email was written within the context of revelations over the past week that FitzGerald was found in a car one early morning nearly two years ago with a woman who was not his wife and that he drove his car for 10 years without a driver’s license – revelations most believe have minimized any realistic chance he had of defeating Republican Gov. John Kasich this fall.

“This week, our family dealt with an ongoing challenge, but it’s not the one you probably heard about,” Ed and Shannon FitzGerald say in the beginning of the email. “It wasn’t about personal attacks, or personal mistakes, or gutter politics. While the political world, as usual, was focused on that kind of thing, we were focused on our oldest son, Jack.”

The email goes on to recap the diagnosis four years ago of non-Hodgkins Lymphoma for Jack FitzGerald, which occurred while FitzGerald was running for Cuyahoga County executive. Jack, now 20 and a student at Xavier University, underwent chemotherapy and was declared “cancer free,” according to the email.

“He recently had some symptoms that had us concerned, so yesterday we had one of our periodic checkups, and so far everything seems fine,” the FitzGerald email continues. “We’re lucky that we’v e had such excellent, compassionate medical care. And in a way, we’re lucky that this has helped our family put the political games of the last week in perspective.

“While the rest of the political establishment was talking about drivers' licenses, our focus was right where it belonged – on our family.”

There has been no immediate word from the campaign explaining why the FitzGeralds sent the email. Staffers were relieved Wednesday upon learning that Jack FitzGerald’s tests were negative, but did not want anything reported in the press. FitzGerald seldom mentions his children on the campaign trail, except in passing. He did lash out at Kasich and Republicans for what he said were attacks on his children last week when the 2012 encounter became public.

A Democratic source said the FitzGeralds “felt it was needed.” Along with the email, his campaign tweeted a picture of the FitzGerald family in front of an American flag.

The FitzGerald email finishes: “We’re not looking for sympathy; lots of families have gone through the same or worse. But it’s helped us learn a lesson: that whatever is thrown at the FitzGerald family – personal, political, medical, whatever – we’re going to survive and just get stronger as a family unit. Nothing – nothing – will ever change that, whether we have support from millions of Ohioans, or whether we’re on our own.

“This campaign was launched for all the right reasons. As much as we care about our family, we know that you care about yours just as much. We want a state government that reflects those values -- quality education, good paying jobs, excellent medical care, and support for struggling families. But we won’t get there if we don’t focus on what really matters, and that’s what we’ll be focusing on again, beginning tomorrow. (Today we have a family birthday celebration, so we are taking a day off from campaigning.)

“Thank you to all of you who have offered support, friendship, and prayers. Our family is strong, and getting stronger. We hope yours is too.”

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By Joe Vardon - The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio (MCT)

©2014 The Columbus Dispatch (Columbus, Ohio)

Visit The Columbus Dispatch (Columbus, Ohio) at www.dispatch.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

Comments

J Cooper

How low can he go, even by political standards he displays no moral standards. He attempts to divert the publicity of his indiscretions by using his child's illness. He should drop out of his failing governor's bid and work on attempting to develop personal character. I am sure when he was with a women, not his spouse in a parking lot, at 4:30AM helping her with her "GPS" he was attempting, "to survive and just get stronger as a family unit." Can't wait for his next visit to Huron County and photo op with the local dems, female party members might want to bring a map and skip the "GPS."

Cliff Cannon

@J Cooper : I wish I had seen your post before my commentary. For you sir nailed it. In my viewpoint.

Cliff Cannon

This just absolutely disgusts me. How many times have we seen politicians running on the back of a suffering or deceased family member ?


The fact of the matter, correct me if I am wrong, is that as rule, we the people. Having suffered our own tragedy's, trials and tribulations prefer those who have the class & decency to suffer in silence.

It is, of course, not that we don't feel the pain of the afflicted. Nor that we don't want to hear about it. Nor is it we don't understand the grave challenge's nor have respect for what one goes through in these hours of crisis.

Rather it is we have, or should have,in my viewpoint,compassion, respect as well as an offering of prayers for those who suffer these affliction's.

What should never be done, in my view point is too use your child's in this case, illness' to try to help you win an election. So Mr. FitzGerald's press release disgusts me. After all if he cared that much about his son's feelings. We wouldn't be discussing his extra marital activity's ,would we ?

Here's hoping the landslide that is about to overtake him, is worse than even he can imagine. Most importantly, here's hoping his son forgives him for using his health as a campaign prop.

earlduck

this is following the script of many successful democrats

Cliff Cannon

earlduck : I think the worst one I remember is in the '92 Presidential election. Al Gore injected his deceased sister into the race, so George Bush countered with a deceased daughter. ( Then I voted for Perot )

Texas

It's time for Mr. FitzGerald to be taken to the "Dump".... long over due ! Anyone out after midnight is up to no good.

earlduck

Ted Kennedy all over again,remember his famous swim and then his son with an amputation of leg due to cancer.
I don't care what this guy does but I think he's a phony and am entitled to that opinion

Cliff Cannon

" I think he's a phony and am entitled to that opinion " Amen to this

freespeech1

Typical democrat ploy deflect from the negative. Using your sick child is deplorable

Windy

THIS the best candidate the Dems have? Good grief!

TFPONH

Remember SB 5. If the country keeps electing Republicans, we will all live in grass huts and the few who have money will leave the country to raid another group. The Republican philosophy: Cut jobs, boost profits for corporations, have no legislation to prevent this and then do it again. Brilliant plan for the country's future and what an incentive for our young people to look ahead to!

Contango

Re: "If the country keeps electing Republicans,"

Correction: If the country keeps electing Republicrats the country will go bankrupt handing out FREE 'cash and prizes' to their constituents and special interests.

freespeech1

Wisconsin did it and last I checked people aren't living in huts and the state now has a 4 billion $ surplus! And I might add the Cleveland school district used some of sb5 s ideas and it worked. Get ur head out of the liberal feedbag

Windy

Wisconsin has a 5% sales tax, too.

Contango

Reporter: So Mrs. Lincoln, besides 'that,' how was the play?

LivinOnTheLake

Like this power-hungry person had any chance of beating John Kasich in the first place is laughable. Even without the bad press (found with woman not his wife in wee hours of morning & no drivers license for 10 years), he was gonna lose in a landslide.