His death was confirmed by President Joe Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Thursday. The cause of death was not immediately announced.
“I rise today with some sad, some horrible, news about the passing of a great friend, Rich Trumka, who left us this morning,” Schumer said on the floor of the Senate, his voice breaking as he patted the lectern to compose himself. “The working people of America have lost a fierce warrior at a time when we needed him most.”
“Rich Trumka was the working people of America,” he said, adding, “I wanted to inform my colleagues that we have just lost a giant, and we need him so.”
Biden also addressed Trumka’s passing at the White House on Thursday.
Trumka had led the AFL-CIO as president since 2009.
This story is breaking and will be updated.