BOSTON – Larry Rasky, a prominent public relations executive and longtime Democratic consultant from Boston, who was a political confidant of former Vice President Joe Biden, tested positive for the coronavirus virus posthumously after dying Sunday.
A cause of death was not announced when he died, but his son, Will Rasky, confirmed he had coronavirus in a statement Friday.
“On Thursday night, we learned that my dad, Larry Rasky, tested positive for COVID-19,” Will Rasky said in a statement provided by the firm Rasky Partners. “My dad had other underlying health conditions that medical professionals urge us to keep in mind. Our family, Larry’s colleagues, and others had already taken precautions in advance of learning the result, and we continue to follow all public health guidance.”
Rasky, 69, was a trusted adviser and friend of the former vice president. He worked as communications director for Biden’s 2008 presidential campaign two decades after serving as Biden’s press secretary during his 1988 presidential run. In 1997, Rasky founded the public relations firm Rasky Partners, where he served as chairman and CEO and his son is an associate vice president.
The Boston Globe described Rasky as a “legendary consultant who helped guide the campaigns of several top Democratic candidates.”
In a statement, Biden called Rasky “one of the sharpest political minds of his generation, a trusted advisor, and for me, a good and loyal friend.
“Jill and I, and all of the Bidens, send our love and deepest condolences to Larry’s wife Carolyn, the love of his life, and his son Will, who inherited his father’s fervent belief in the good we can do in public life.”
Ahead of the 2020 election, he served as treasurer of Unite the Country, a Super PAC that Rasky helped found last year to boost Biden’s presidential bid. It’s raised nearly $8 million.
Prior to starting the firm, Rasky also worked as director of policy and communications for then-Rep. Ed Markey and the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance. He worked as communications director for John Kerry’s first Senate campaign in 1984, and deputy press secretary for President Jimmy Carter’s re-election campaign in 1980.
“Larry was a giant in so many ways, not just professionally but personally. He loved and was loved by so many,” Rasky Partners said in a statement. “He always treated the company like a family and we were all shocked and saddened by the news of his passing. He has left an indelible imprint on everyone he touched and the company that bears his name will go on in his spirit.”
Reach Joey Garrison on Twitter @joeygarrison