In a statement to the Associated Press, a spokesperson for the incoming House member—who was days away from being sworn in—confirmed Letlow's death.
"The family appreciates the numerous prayers and support over the past days but asks for privacy during this difficult and unexpected time," the spokesperson. "A statement from the family along with funeral arrangements will be announced at a later time."
A previous statement shared to Letlow's verified Twitter account, dated Dec. 23, said the congressman-elect had been transferred from St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe to Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport Academic Medical Center. At the time, Letlow was reported as being in "stable condition" in the ICU, where he was being given Remdesivir and steroids.
Letlow died Tuesday night at the Ochsner facility. He was first admitted to the Monroe hospital on Dec. 19 following a positive COVID-19 test. Per doctors, he did not have any underlying health conditions. Letlow is survived by wife Julia Barnhill and the couple's two children.
Letlow—who had previously worked under Governor Jindal's administration and was elected in a runoff this month for the 5th District U.S. House seat—had been criticized on social media for multiple instances in which he declined to wear a mask, as well as comments he made about the impact of the economy during the pandemic.
"I am heartbroken that he will not be able to serve our people as a U.S. representative, but I am even more devastated for his loving family, the current governor of Louisiana," John Bel Edwards, said Tuesday.