Republican Rep. Vern Buchanan paid tribute to aide Gary Tibbetts, describing him as “a true public servant in every sense of the word.”

A longtime staffer for Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) died Friday from COVID-19.
Buchanan tweeted he was “devastated” by the death of 66-year-old Gary Tibbetts, a field representative who’d worked for him since 2011.
Tibbetts died at Manatee Memorial Hospital in Bradenton, Florida.
The state is currently experiencing a devastating spike in daily confirmed cases of the coronavirus.
Buchanan described his aide as “the consummate professional and a true public servant in every sense of the word.”
“He touched so many lives and was loved and respected by those who knew him,” he continued. “I will never forget his uplifting spirit, sense of humor and sheer joy at helping others.”
“Sandy and I offer our deepest sympathies to his wife, Valerie and family,” Buchanan added. “He will be missed greatly.”
Buchanan had announced Tibbetts’ hospitalization on July 15.
Political figures remembered him as “a wonderful man” and as being “loved by so many in our community.”