U.S. President Barack Obama issued a statement Sunday, mourning the loss of Jake Brewer, 34, a White House staffer who was killed Saturday. Brewer, a cyclist, was participating in a bicycle ride to raise money for cancer research when he lost control of his bike and collided with an oncoming vehicle.
“We set out to recruit the best of the best to join their government and help us harness the power of technology and data to innovate new solutions for the 21st century. Simply put, Jake was one of the best,” Obama said in the statement. “Armed with a brilliant mind, a big heart, and an insatiable desire to give back, Jake devoted his life to empowering people and making government work better for them.”
The White House website named Brewer as a senior policy adviser in the Office of the Chief Technology Officer. He was participating in the Ride to Conquer Cancer, a two-day 150-mile trek that began in Washington, running through Mount Airy, Virginia, where Brewer was pronounced dead around 3:40 p.m. Saturday. His mother, Lori Brewer Collins, told the Washington Post Brewer was taking part in the race because a close friend of his had cancer, and he “tended to live life for other people.”
A number of well-known technology entrepreneurs shared their condolences on social media. Anil Dash, co-founder of the app ThinkUp, and D.J. Patil, chief data scientist with the White House Office of Science and Technology, were among those to share their memories.
From our first conversation years ago to our last a few days ago, every time I spoke to @jakebrewer, he focused on how to help people.
— Anil Dash (@anildash) September 20, 2015
— DJ Patil (@DJ44) September 20, 2015