Joe the Plumber—famous for confronting Obama in 2007—has passed away, age 49

News & Politics

The plumber who famously questioned former President Barack Obama on his tax plan when running for office in 2008 has passed away.

Joseph Wurzelbacher—better known as “Joe the Plumber“—died on Sunday morning, according to The Western Journal.

Wurzelbacher had been living with pancreatic cancer leading up to his death at age 49. The plumber and Air Force veteran was thrown into the spotlight in 2007 when he questioned Obama’s tax policies during an event in his home state of Ohio.

He urged Obama to be honest about his plans to raises taxes on some small business owners. The report noted that many Americans pointed to the working-class family man as representative of those who were negatively impacted by Obama’s policies.

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Derek Hunter, a friend of Wurzelbacher’s, posted to X: “Horrible news. My good friend Joe Wurzelbacher, aka Joe the Plumber, passed away this morning at the age of 49 from pancreatic cancer. He was a good man and an exceptional friend. Please consider helping his widow and young children here.”

A GiveSendGo fundraiser was set up to assist the Wurzelbacher family with medical expenses as he was being treated. The fundraiser had raised more than $120,000 as of Sunday.

The fundraiser page said: “Toledo native, Joe ‘The Plumber’ Wurzelbacher, was recently diagnosed with Stage 3 Pancreatic cancer. Joe is a Military Veteran and is receiving treatment at the Ann Arbor VA Hospital as well as the University of Michigan Hospital.”

The description of the fundraiser went on to explain more about Wurzelbacher’s family, and how the money sent would be used.

“God doesn’t promise us an easy road,” Wurzelbacher said during an interview with Faithwire. “He just promises to be there for us when we go on these roads.”

Wurzelbacher is survived by his wife Katie and their three young children.

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