“Herman Cain – our boss, our friend, like a father to so many of us – has passed away,” Calabrese said in the blog post. “We all prayed so hard every day. We knew the time would come when the Lord would call him home, but we really loved having him here with us, and we hoped he would make a full recovery.
Calabrese did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for further comment.
Cain was one of the most prominent public figures in the United States to have died from Covid-19. A 74-year-old stage 4 colon cancer survivor, Cain had attended Trump’s rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, less than two weeks before he was diagnosed.
Cain had been a business leader and chairman of the board of directors of a branch of the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City before entering Republican politics and eventually becoming a presidential candidate.
Last year, Trump briefly considered choosing Cain as a candidate to join the Federal Reserve Board. Cain remained a staunch supporter of Trump after his appointment was withdrawn, and he attended the president’s controversial re-election rally in Oklahoma in June, shortly before being diagnosed with the coronavirus.
Cain had been hospitalized in Atlanta on July 1, two days after learning he had tested positive for Covid-19, according to a statement posted on his social media accounts at the time.
He did not need a ventilator and was “awake and alert” when he presented to the hospital, the statement said. “Please join us in praying for Mr. Cain and for all those who have contracted the coronavirus – as well as their families,” he said.
Cain tweeted a photo of himself at the Trump rally surrounded by other attendees, none of whom appeared to be wearing masks or other protective gear.
The Trump campaign said all event attendees had their temperatures checked upon entry, and masks and hand sanitizer were distributed but not required to use them.
The campaign revealed ahead of the event that six team members involved in preparations for the rally had tested positive for the virus and had been quarantined.
The July 2 statement on Cain’s hospitalization read, “There is no way of knowing for sure how and where Mr. Cain contracted the coronavirus. The Trump campaign said after Cain’s diagnosis that he did not meet the president at the Tulsa rally.
Cain’s social media accounts have occasionally provided vague updates on his condition. A July 5 post said it was “making progress” and “more encouraging news” should arrive soon. Two days later, Cain’s Twitter account said that “the doctors are trying to make sure his oxygen levels are correct.”
On July 10, another tweet said that Cain himself was describing his status as “cruise control” because “progress is slow but his breathing is getting stronger day by day. Make no mistake: it is improving! ”
The most recent update came on Monday, when Cain’s social media revealed he was “being treated with oxygen for his lungs” nearly a month after entering hospital. “He’s really getting better, which means it’s working,” the update says.
Calabrese, the media director for Cain’s website, has repeatedly refused CNBC’s requests for additional information on Cain’s condition throughout his battle with the virus.
“We’re not saying anything other than what we’ve posted on social media,” Calabrese said in a July 7 email. “It’s Herman’s and [his wife, Gloria Etchison’s,] so wish thank you for respecting it. ”
This is the latest news. Please come back for updates.