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McDonnell's father-in-law dies; governor cancels weekend events

Anita Kumar

Gov. Bob McDonnell's father-in-law, Frank Gardner, died late Saturday night at his home at the Greenspring retirement community in Springfield. The governor canceled his weekend events, including a bill signing in Crozet.

Gardner, 87, was a somewhat regular fixture on the campaign trail last year. He was known to tell stories to supporters (and reporters) and even break out in Spanish at Hispanic-oriented events.

The lifelong Northern Virginian worked as an FBI agent and a foreign service officer after serving in the Marines during World War II. (Records indicate he is one of the few remaining Marine survivors of the battles of Saipan, Iwo Jima and Okinawa.)

His wife, Geraldine, died in June 2009. The couple had nine children, including the governor's wife, Maureen McDonnell.

Virginia's first lady loves to tell the story of how her father, an avid Redskins fan, convinced her to try out for the Redskinettes because he wanted the free football tickets that came with the job.

By Anita Kumar  |  June 20, 2010; 4:13 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , Robert F. McDonnell  
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My heart is with Gov. McDonnell.

Posted by: drumbeater | June 20, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

On Fathers day, The Gov loses his father in law. I am sorry for the family

Posted by: pvogel88 | June 20, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

He sounds like he was a good man, which begs the question how he could have raised a daughter that would have married such a clown.

Posted by: Baltimore137 | June 21, 2010 7:15 AM | Report abuse

Oh, for heaven's sake Baltimore. I'm a Democrat, too. But knock it off!

Posted by: rockchalk | June 21, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Baltimore137- How could you say such a thing when they are mourning...

Posted by: rva17 | June 21, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Semper Fi & RIP.

Posted by: ms1234 | June 21, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

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