A CONSERVATIVE activist who became nationally known in 2008 for confronting then-presidential candidate Barack Obama during his campaign trail has died at age 49.
“Our hearts are broken,” Wurzelbacher’s wife, Katie, revealed in a statement to Fox News Digital.
“We lost a beloved husband, father, son, brother and friend. He made an impact on so many lives.
“When I met Joe he was already known by someone else as ‘Joe the Plumber’ but he wrote something to me that stood out and showed me who he truly was: ‘just Joe.’
“He was an average, honorable man trying to do great things for the country he loved so deeply after being thrust into the public eye for asking a question,” Katie said.
“My heart goes out to everyone whose lives are impacted by cancer,” the grieving wife added.
“There are so many ups and downs but we tried to find joy in every day.
“He fought long and hard, but is now free from pain. I don’t think of him as losing his battle. Because he knew Jesus, his battle was won.
“Joe’s last wish was to get us back by my family. The first night here, he gave me a big smile and said ‘we made it.’
“To everyone who has and continues to support us, and there are so many, Thank You! You helped bring Joe peace and for that I will always be grateful.”
He accused the presidential candidate’s proposed tax plan of clashing with the American Dream.
The small business owner asked Obama how his new tax plan would affect filers above the $250,000 threshold.
“I’m getting ready to buy a company that makes about $250,000 to $270,000 dollars a year. Your new tax plan is going to tax me more, isn’t it?” a poised Wurzelbacher asked Obama.
The Democratic nominee responded to Wurzelbacher by suggesting his plan would allow small businesses, like his plumbing company, to grow more rapidly.
“It’s not that I want to punish your success,” Obama told Wurzelbacher.
“I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they’ve got a chance at success, too.”
Wurzelbacher made several appearances on news outlets and was name-dropped multiple times during Obama and McCain’s presidential debate on October 15, 2008.
In 2012, Wurzelbacher launched an unsuccessful congressional bid against Democratic incumbent March Kaptur.