At the age of 68, the former Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter died unexpectedly
Former Defense Minister Ashton Carter died suddenly at the age of 68, according to a family member.
Carter died Monday night in Boston of a “sudden cardiac event.”
He served as Secretary of Defense under the former president Barack Obama From February 2015 to January 2017.
Carter, who studied at Yale University and was a Rhodes Scholar, joined the Defense Department under former President Bill Clinton. He later served as Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics from 2009 to 2011 and Deputy Secretary of Defense from 2011 to 2013.
He was nominated to replace Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense in December 2014. He was confirmed by a 93-5 vote by the Senate in February 2015.
“As secretary, she successfully campaigned to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria, opened all combat positions to women, and forged new connections between the Department of Defense and the nation’s technology community,” her family said in a statement. “Although he was known for his deep understanding of military technology, nuclear weapons and international affairs, Secretary Carter loved nothing more than spending time with the troops, making frequent trips to Iraq and Afghanistan to visit US troops. [with his wife Stephanie]”.
He is survived by his wife and two children, Ava and Will.
In addition to leading the US offensive against ISIS, Carter also oversaw a period at the Department of Defense where all restrictions on women serving in combat were lifted and removed the ban on transgender members of the military, a rule later repealed by then-President Donald Trump.
Carter joined the Belfer Center at Harvard University’s Kennedy School after leaving government, serving as its director for the past five years. He taught at the Kennedy School in the 1980s before joining the US government.
Douglas Elmendorf, dean of the Harvard Kennedy School, wrote about his friend: “I want to express my gratitude for his insight and wisdom, his unwavering commitment to making the world a better place, his belief that the Kennedy School can make a difference. in the world, his generous spirit to his students and colleagues, and his warm and friendly friendship to me. I will miss him very much.”
ABC News’ Mark Osborne contributed to this report.
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