Jim Ramstad was a familiar name in Minnesota politics for many years. A moderate Republican, he won over friends and allies on both sides of the aisle. Something that probably helped him score legislative achievements.

Ramstad also publicly acknowledge struggles in his personal life. Helping people suffering from similar problems as he became a major goal of his. According to MSN, Ramstad passed away on November 5.

Was an outspoken advocate for mental health

Jim Ramstad died at his home. The Boston Globe reports that the cause of death was Parkinson's disease.

Dean Peterson, his former chief of staff, confirmed it. Peterson also had high praise for his former boss. Ramstad 'leaves a legacy of love, service, dignity, and respect,' he said.

At one point in his life, Ramstad might not have been so eulogized. A turning point came for him after an incident at a hotel. There, he caused a scene that led him to be arrested for a drunken disturbance. He had an alcohol-induced blackout and later woke up in a jail cell in South Dakota.

This led Ramstad to seek treatment regarding his drinking. He later said if he hadn't gotten treatment, he wouldn't have survived. Assisting those seeking treatment for addiction and mental health problems became a cornerstone of his career.

Ramstad was a central figure in passing the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act.

The act expanded access and increased insurance coverage for people seeking treatment for mental health and substance abuse.

Ramstad married Kathryn Mitchell in 2005. They would have a daughter, Christen.

Current Minnesota Governor Tim Walz, a Democrat, called Ramstad a mentor and friend. The two had served in the U.S. House of Representatives together.

Former Congressman Erik Paulsen, a Republican, said, 'Jim was about identifying a problem and fixing it.' Paulsen succeeded Ramstad in his House seat after his retirement.

Ramstad served in the House for almost two decades

Jim Ramstad had served in the U.S. Army, attaining the rank of first lieutenant. Afterward, he became a practicing lawyer. Later, he was a legislative aide for the Minnesota House of Representatives.

Ramstad served in the Minnesota Senate beginning in 1981. Initially, he represented the 43rd District. Later, it was changed to the 45th District.

In 1990, Ramstad was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. He represented Minnesota's 3rd District, located in the Minneapolis region.

He'd be re-elected to the seat eight times.

After retiring from the House, Ramstad considered running for governor of Minnesota. Ultimately, he decided against it. As a private citizen, he worked for the tax consulting firm Alliantgroup.