As the November elections get closer, tensions between political parties have risen. An already polarized electorate has been driven even further apart. But amidst the heated rhetoric, there have been times that should make people step back and collect themselves.

Earlier this year, South Carolina Republican Congressional candidate Katie Arrington was a passenger in a fatal two-vehicle road incident. She had won the nomination over the incumbent representative, former Governor Mark Sanford, just days before. Arrington narrowly escaped death herself. Her injuries included a fractured back and multiple broken ribs.

But Arrington was able to eventually return to the campaign trail in a wheelchair. In Florida, a different tragedy involving a Congressional candidate has occurred.

Democratic candidate April Freeman has died suddenly

April Freeman won the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 17th District in August. Freeman was a business owner, a wife, a mother, and a grandmother. She had twice run in Florida's 19th District, losing both times to the Republican, former college basketball star Curt Clawson. In 2016, she ran in the 17th, losing to incumbent Republican Tom Rooney.

Rooney has opted not to run for re-election. Greg Steube, a member of the Florida Senate since 2016, won the Republican nomination.

Steube had previously served in the Florida House of Representatives. Freeman was again chosen to be the nominee on the Democratic side.

But on September 25, Freeman's husband, David, made the announcement that his wife had died suddenly the night before. Newser reports that David Freeman believes that the cause of his wife's death was a heart attack.

However, no official cause of death has been publicly announced yet. The Orlando Weekly indicates that she had been working on her campaign that night.

Greg Steube has canceled upcoming campaign events following the tragedy. He stated that his thoughts and prayers are with Freeman's family, and he respected her service to the community.

Democrats would have to choose another candidate

Even as people mourn, the business of politics continues on. Freeman's name is to remain on the ballot for the general election. The local Democratic Party would have to pick another nominee within five days. The votes for Freeman would then be assigned to the new nominee.

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