Maryland's gubernatorial candidate Kevin Kamentz suddenly dies - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Maryland’s gubernatorial candidate Kevin Kamentz suddenly dies

BALTIMORE — One of the leading Democratic contenders in Maryland’s gubernatorial race and a longtime politician in the state died suddenly early this morning — apparently of cardiac arrest. Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz was 60.

After he awakened around 2 a.m. EDT at his Owings Mills home and complaining of feeling ill, Kamenetz and his wife drove to a volunteer fire station less than two miles away, county officials told the media. He called 911 from the parking lot then lost consciousness as firefighters assisted him, performing CPR and using a defibrillator. After medics arrived, he was transported to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:22 a.m. EDT. A county spokesperson said he never regained consciousness

Kamenetz was the leader of Maryland’s third most populous county. Baltimore County is larger than the city, in terms of population, with more than 800,000 residents. He was serving his second term since initially being elected Baltimore County executive in December 2010. He had previously served four terms on the Baltimore County Council, representing the county’s second district, and had been involved in county politics for 24 years.

Kamenetz announced his candidacy for governor last September, and was running a formidable race against eight other  contenders who were challenging Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. They include Montgomery County Executive Rushern Baker and former NAACP President Ben Jealous. Kamenetz had raised more money than his Democratic rivals and was considered a strong contender for the June 26 primary.

Kamenetz, who had been in local and state politics for nearly 25 years, had strong name recognition and a good track record in his jurisdiction. With relatively low taxes compared to Baltimore City that have not increased since he took office and an excellent public school system that includes several Blue Ribbon schools, Baltimore County had several attributes that Kamenetz could point to.

Baltimore County Administrative Officer Fred Homan was named acting executive, effective immediately, and will serve the remainder of Kamenetz’s term, which ends in December.

Gov. Hogan ordered state flags to be flown at half-staff in memory of Kamenetz. The governor said he and his wife are “shocked and grieved” by the county executive’s death. Other gubernatorial candidates released similar statements, praising Kamenetz and saying they were shocked by his sudden death.

In addition to his wife, his survivors include two teenage sons.

A funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m. EDT Friday at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation.

This article is republished with permission from Talk Media News.

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