Rep. Thomas Massie Announces Tragic Family Loss: ‘Thank You For Your Prayers’


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Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) suffered a heartbreaking loss on Thursday, according to a statement he posted to his more than 850,000 followers on X.

Massie, 53, has been a reliable conservative in Congress since 2013 and throughout that time relied on support from his wife of more than 35 years, Rhonda Howard. That all disappeared on Thursday, according to the Republican who wrote that Howard passed away due to undisclosed reasons.

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“Yesterday my high school sweetheart, the love of my life for over 35 years, the loving mother of our 4 children, the smartest kindest woman I ever knew, my beautiful and wise queen forever, Rhonda went to Heaven. Thank you for your prayers for our family in this difficult time,” he wrote, including photos from their wedding day and into the present.

The couple traveled to Cambridge, Massachusetts for college where they both earned engineering degrees from MIT. While in college they launched a tech company together, according to a 1996 interview they gave to Fortune Magazine. Together, they designed a device they called the Phantom, which “gives computer users the uncanny sensation of fingering objects that don’t exist… At first glance, the Phantom seems an unlikely breakthrough: A thimble on the end of a small, jointed metal arm. But magic happens when you stick a finger in the thimble and move it around–you seem to be touching invisible objects, thanks to forces exerted against your finger by computer-controlled electric motors on the arm.”

The Massies eventually formed their company SensAble Technologies around the technology and collected more than $40 million in early venture funding. Today as a result of their work, the technology “is now used to design automobiles, jewelry, shoes, dental prosthetics, and even reconstructive implants for wounded soldiers.”

After financial success, the Massies started a family that grew to two daughters and two sons, all of whom Rhonda “devoted her life to,” Massie said.

More surprising was a revelation that the power couple had just finished a tour of the Mt. Rainier stratovolcano in Washington State, indicating that Howard was up and ambulatory during her final days.

Well-wishers flowed into Rep. Massie’s comment section on Friday, offering tributes to a loving wife who shunned the spotlight enveloping her husband as she raised their children in private life. “Very sorry to hear of your loss, sir. She was a very special person,” wrote follower Atticus. Another added: “I am so extremely sorry for your loss sir. May her memory forever be a blessing to you and your family.”

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