POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. (NEWS10) —Attorney, war veteran, and Dutchess County Congressional candidate Kyle Van De Water has been found dead. He was 41.
Police reportedly found him in the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery. According to the New York Post, his death is being investigated as an apparent suicide.
Van De Water was born in Rhinebeck and raised in Poughkeepsie. He graduated from UMASS Amherst on an ROTC scholarship in 2002, and from Albany Law School in 2005. He was deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan, and was awarded the Bronze Star in 2011.
Last year, Van De Water ran on the Republican ticket in New York’s 19th Congressional District, losing to Rep. Antonio Delgado. They were poised for a rematch, but he’d recently dropped out of the race, according to the Poughkeepsie Journal.
While the exact circumstances surrounding his death have not been made public, Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro released a statement:
“My heart is broken for Kyle’s children and family. My prayers are with them as they attempt to come to grips with this absolute tragedy.
Kyle was a war hero who put his life and well-being on the line for his country. We owe him, his family, and all of our brave service men and women everything for the sacrifices they have made.
To all our service men and women who struggle upon returning home, and anyone who may be struggling with this news, please know that help is always available to you.”
If you know a veteran who is in crisis, know they can always call the veteran’s crisis line at (800) 273-TALK.
Delgado also released a statement:
“My heart breaks for Kyle, and his beautiful family. We shared a number of conversations about family and country, and I walked away from each one knowing that he had a profound love for both.
I know he will be immensely missed, and I’m praying for all who loved him—his friends, fellow soldiers, and family. Kyle’s death is tragically felt not only on an individual level, but also nationally, as far too many veterans across our country are going without the support and care that their service to our great land undoubtedly necessitates.
We can and must do better. May God rest Kyle’s soul. And may God bless his family.”
On Wednesday, Delgado held a veteran support forum in Rhinebeck in honor of Van De Water. It’s available in two parts on Delgado’s Facebook. Watch the first part below:
Local Assemblyman Chris Tague also released a statement:
“I am saddened to hear news of the passing of Kyle Van De Water, a man who took pride in serving his nation in the army, as well as his community, following his service. Having campaigned with Kyle, I got to know him as a man who put his family and his country before anything, and my thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones.”