Henderson, NV – Reid’s wife of over 60 years, Landra Gould Reid, confirmed the news that Harry Reid, the longtime Senator from Nevada passed away on Tuesday at age 82 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
Reid’s Passing Followed Cancer Diagnosis in 2018
In 2018, Reid underwent surgery for pancreatic cancer – a disease with very low survival rates. However, in 2021 Reid said he was in “full remission” and cancer-free after an experimental procedure.
Despite this optimistic prognosis, Reid’s family said on Tuesday that he died peacefully at home following a “courageous, four-year battle with pancreatic cancer.” He was surrounded by friends and family at the time of his passing.
In a statement on Tuesday, she said
“I am heartbroken to announce the passing of my husband, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He died peacefully this afternoon, surrounded by our family, following a courageous, four-year battle with pancreatic cancer.”Landra Said:
Harry Reid Injury
On January 1, 2015, Harry Reid sustained major injuries from an accident while exercising at his Nevada home.
Reid was using a piece of exercise equipment when part of it broke off, causing him to fall.
The accident left Reid with broken ribs and shattered facial bones. His right eye socket was also damaged, putting him at risk for permanent vision loss in that eye.
Due to the severity of his injuries, Reid underwent emergency surgery on January 26, 2015. During the operation, surgeons repaired his facial bones and removed a blood clot that had formed in his right eye due to the trauma.
Even after the initial surgeries, Reid faced a lengthy recovery period due to the extent of his injuries. The accident left the Senator with limited mobility and vision issues in his right eye.
Landra Gould Reid’s Early Life and Cancer Battle
Landra Gould was born in 1946 in Nevada, making her around 77 years old currently. She attended Basic High School in Henderson, Nevada – the same school as her future husband, Harry Reid.
Landra and Harry Reid met while attending Basic High School together in the 1950s. Harry Reid was on the football team during his high school years.
After high school, Landra’s husband Harry Reid attended the University of Utah before graduating from Utah State University with dual degrees in history and political science. Reid was known as a highly educated man.
In 2011, at age 65, Landra Gould Reid was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. She underwent treatment at an undisclosed medical institution in Washington.
Despite the difficult diagnosis, Landra was able to overcome breast cancer after undergoing treatment in 2011.
Harry Reid and Landra Gould’s Early Relationship
Landra Gould and Harry Reid first met while attending Basic High School in Nevada, where Landra was the senior to underclassman Harry’s junior.
In his memoir The Good Fight, Reid described first seeing Gould while she was washing her family’s car. He admitted he initially remarked that she seemed to be a good car washer.
Reid recalled their first date when he borrowed a friend’s car to take Landra to the movies. However, the car wouldn’t start, so they had to push it to get it going for their date.
Landra came from an Orthodox Jewish family who opposed her dating Harry Reid, who was not Jewish. Her father worked as a pharmacist and held strong religious beliefs.
“As our relationship built, her parents came to the realization that it could be something serious and it was a very difficult time, the last few years of courtship, because they of course wanted her to meet somebody Jewish.”
As Reid and Gould’s relationship progressed, her parents realized it was serious and likely headed towards marriage. This was distressing to them given their religious opposition.
Due to the opposition from Landra’s family, Reid and Gould decided to elope in 1959 while away at college. Harry Reid and Landra Gould overcame obstacles early on to begin their 60+ year relationship.
Harry Reid and Landra Gould Shared Over 60 Years Together
After eloping in 1959, Harry Reid and Landra Gould were married for over 60 years, until Reid’s passing in December 2021 at age 82. Gould supported Reid throughout his lengthy political career.
As Reid became increasingly busy with his political aspirations in Nevada and Washington DC, Landra took charge of keeping their family strong and balanced.
Even after decades of marriage, Reid maintained his admiration for his wife’s beauty and character. In a CNN interview, he said:
“She’s never changed. She’s 74 years old. Landra could win a beauty contest today. She is the nicest person, has been a wonderful mother, a terrific wife to me. I wish there was a way I could express to everyone how fortunate I am,”Mr. Reid talked to CNN about his beloved wife.
Reid and Gould raised five children during their marriage – four sons named Rory, Key, Leif, and Josh, and one daughter named Lana.
Several of their children went into politics like their father. Their eldest son Rory served as County Commissioner and ran for Governor of Nevada. Son Josh also ran for local office.
Just weeks before his death, Las Vegas Airport was renamed Harry Reid International Airport in honor of the longtime Senator. The renaming ceremony was attended by son Rory.
Harry’s Early Life and his Political Career
Harry Reid was born in 1939 in Searchlight, Nevada, and grew up in poverty. His father was an alcoholic who later died by suicide, and his mother worked as a laundress in a local bordello.
As a child, Reid swam at a pool located at a nearby brothel, as his own home lacked indoor plumbing. This exemplified his rugged upbringing.
With no high school in his remote hometown, Reid hitchhiked over 40 miles to attend Basic High School in Henderson, Nevada. There he met his future wife, Landra Gould.
Reid attended Utah State University where he and Landra converted to Mormonism. Reid graduated with dual degrees in political science and history.
To pay his way through George Washington University Law School, Reid worked nights as a Capitol police officer in Washington DC. This work ethic propelled his career.
Nevada Politics Before Long Senate Tenure
Harry Reid became known for his straightforward, blunt communication style in Washington, hanging up phone calls without niceties.
At just 28 years old, Reid won his first election to the Nevada Assembly in 1968. Two years later, he became the youngest Lieutenant Governor in Nevada history.
“If Harry said he would do something, he did it,” “If he gave you his word, you could bank on it. That’s how he got things done for the good of the country for decades.”President Joe Biden said after his Death
Reid served in the U.S. House starting in 1982. His 12 years make him the longest-serving Nevada Congressman in state history.
As Senate Majority Leader, Reid kept the Senate under Democratic control during both the George W. Bush and Obama presidencies.
Through savvy investments and career earnings, Reid and his wife Landra accumulated an estimated net worth of $10 million by the end of his Senate tenure.