Members Mourn Bob Bean

Posted May 17, 2004 at 6:06pm

House lawmakers offered condolences to the family of former veteran Capitol Hill staffer Bob Bean, following his death from an apparent heart attack Friday.

According to the Maryland Medical Examiner’s Office, Bean, 43, died of natural causes, specifically cardiovascular disease.

The incident occurred after Bean suffered chest pains while fishing Friday in the Chesapeake Bay, The Associated Press reported. Although Bean was rushed to shore by the other members of his five-person fishing party, he was pronounced dead on arrival.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources Police did not return a telephone call seeking additional information.

Bean, a 22-year veteran of the federal government, had recently become a vice president at Jefferson Consulting Group LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based government relations and business consulting firm.

A onetime Senate page, Bean began his long tenure on Capitol Hill in 1979, as senior staff in the Senate Democratic Cloakroom.

The Leonardtown, Md., native would go on to become the Senate’s Assistant Secretary for the Majority in 1986, and five years later he would take over as Deputy Senate Sergeant-at-Arms.

In 1995, Bean left Capitol Hill to serve as deputy assistant secretary to then-Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, focusing on issues ranging from appropriations to law enforcement.

The George Washington University alumnus returned to Congress in 1999, taking a position on the other side of the Capitol. He served as minority staff director of the House Administration Committee under then-ranking member Steny Hoyer (D-Md.).

“I was proud to call Bob Bean a good friend and close adviser,” Hoyer said Monday.

In recent days, House Members offered condolences to Bean’s family, describing him as “a tremendously hard worker” and recalling his “diligence and passion” for Congress.

“Bob made a tremendous difference in Washington, D.C., and Maryland through both his public service and private life,” Hoyer said. “He touched an uncountable number of people, and all who had the privilege to meet and know him were truly impressed by his kindness, dedication and intelligence.”

Rep. Bob Ney (R-Ohio), the House Administration panel’s chairman noted that during Bean’s tenure as minority staff director, the panel dealt with a range of issues, from election reform to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

“[T]here were many times when the process was in danger of breaking down. Bob Bean refused to let that happen though,” Ney said. “He was a stand-up guy, a tremendously hard worker and truly great American.”

Similarly, Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.), the House Administration panel’s current ranking member, recalled Bean’s “sheer diligence and passion for this institution.”

“Bob gave three years of dedicated service to this committee, and in the process inspired his staff to serve with the same level of excellence to which he was committed,” Larson said.

Visitation will be at the Huntt Funeral Home in Waldorf, Md., Tuesday from 6 to 8 p.m., and Wednesday, from 5 to 8 p.m. Mass is scheduled at St. John Catholic Church in Clinton, Md., at 1 p.m. on Thursday. Burial services will be at Emmanuel Methodist in Baden, Md.