The mother of 5th District Congress candidate Dan Roberti died on Saturday at age 60.

“It is with deep sadness that I and my brother, Vincent, announce the death of our mother, Kathleen Lenihan, after a courageous, six-year battle with melanoma,” Roberti said in a statement released by his campaign Saturday evening. “My mother was an inspiration to everyone in our family. We drew on her strength, relished her wit, and sought to embody her compassion. She was a schoolteacher who challenged her students to make their world a better place. She set that same goal for my brother and me, always encouraging us to reach out to those less fortunate than ourselves. Her values are her legacy and will be our enduring guide.”

Roberti had announced earlier in the day that he was “curtailing” campaign activities ahead of Tuesday’s Democratic primary to be at his mother’s bedside.

Mary Moran notified the media of the decision via an e-mail from Campaign Manager Erik Williams that was released shortly before 5 p.m. Saturday. The seven-sentence statement said his mother, Kathleen Lenihan, is in the final days of a six-year battle with cancer and that the candidate had been at her bedside since Thursday.

“However, his campaign for the Democratic Party nomination continues,” Williams said in the  statement. “Dan’s volunteers and staff are more dedicated than ever and committed to his success. He acknowledges that his family, friends and supporters have been a source of strength.”

The announcement of her death came at just after 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

Roberti, a 30-year-old resident of Kent, is in a three-way battle with former state representative Elizabeth Esty and Connecticut House Speaker Chris Donovan in the Democratic primary for the Fifth District Congressional seat currently held by Democrat Chris Murphy of Cheshire.

Roberti’s mother and father divorced when the candidate was toddler. His father, Vincent Roberti Sr., is the chairman of a powerful Washington, D.C. lobbying firm, Roberti Associates.

Lenihan, who most recently resided in Kent, passed away in hospice care in the Candlewood Valley Health & Rehabilitation Center in New Milford. She was a native of Ridgewood, New Jersey, and formerly worked as a Bridgeport public school teacher.

She is also survived by her son Vincent Roberti Jr., and his wife Bronwyn, and their son Vincent Roberti III, all of Kent; as well as several brothers and sisters.

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