Donald Payne Jr., New Jersey, Black lawmaker

New Jersey Congressman Donald Payne Jr Dies At 65

The congressman held the seat previously held by his father, Donald Payne Sr., who died in 2012.

Congressman Donald Payne Jr. of New Jersey has died. Payne represented New Jersey’s 10th Congressional District. Payne suffered a heart attack in early April, according to a report shared by his office on April 17. 

His peers took to social media to express their condolences for the beloved congressman who held the seat for six terms.

Linden, New Jersey, Mayor Derek Armstead posted a photo of the American flag flying at half-staff on X. 

“We are devastated by the passing of Congressman Donald Payne Jr., who was not just a political figure but also a cherished friend.” Armstead wrote. 

New York Democratic House Leader Hakeem Jeffries lauded Payne for his lifelong commitment to public service and for being an “outspoken advocate” for men’s health. This included efforts to provide accessible screening and treatment options for cancer patients.

“Don leaves behind a legacy of relentless determination in the face of adversity. Our nation is forever indebted to Rep. Payne, Jr. for his service and commitment to his community, to the Congress, and to the country. I am grateful to my classmate and friend for the role he played in my own public service journey, through our conversations on train rides to and from Washington and our close partnership as Members from neighboring delegations,” Jefferies said in a press release

The Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) also paid tribute to the congressman by highlighting his achievements, which included advocating for reproductive freedom, free college tuition, and serving on various committees. 

“Representative Payne will be remembered by all those who knew him for his kindness and generosity. He leaves behind a legacy and commitment to service that New Jerseyans and our country will not soon forget.” The statement said. 

Payne is survived by his wife, Beatrice, and their triplets, Donald III, Jack, and Yvonne, the New Jersey Globe reported.