Montana congressional candidate State Sen. Mark Sweeney dies

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Posted at 9:14 AM, May 07, 2022

HELENA — Montana State Senator and congressional candidate Mark Sweeney died Friday evening at his home in Philipsburg, according to a statement from his family.

Sweeney, 62, was a sitting state senator representing Philipsburg. At the time of his death, Sweeney was one of three Democratic candidates running in the primary for Montana’s new eastern congressional district. A representative of his family said Sweeney died of natural causes.

Sweeney’s family said he was a “beloved father, husband and public servant to the people of Montana."

Elections offices are expected to mail primary ballots to voters this week. Sweeney’s name will likely remain on the ballot as election officials finalized the list of candidate names about a month ago.

Sweeney was born in Butte but moved to Miles City with his family as an infant, graduated from high school there, and attended Miles Community College and Western Montana College. He earned a degree in natural-resource management. He spent most of his career as a fisheries expert with the state Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, working in Glendive, Libby and Anaconda.

The family asked for privacy while they mourn and celebrate Sweeney.

Republicans and Democrats in Montana have been posting reactions to Sweeney's death on social media: