President Joe Biden appeared to claim during a Wednesday speech in Colorado that his late son Beau Biden died in combat.
Biden was speaking near the popular skiing destination city of Vail, Colorado — where he went to designate Camp Hale as a national monument — and he segued from a story about World War II to a reference to his son, who he claimed had “lost his life in Iraq.”
President @JoeBiden incorrectly said his late son Beau "lost his life in Iraq." https://t.co/oZ9GRyRjcI pic.twitter.com/8OvjbQgUaT
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) October 12, 2022
Biden pivoted from a story about how soldiers who trained at Camp Hale had learned to ski and to scale rock formations — skills they would ultimately use defeating the Nazis in Europe — to a mention of his late son Beau.
“American soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division scaled that 1800-foot cliff at night, caught the Germans by surprise, captured key positions, and broke through the German defense line at a pivotal point in the war,” Biden said. “Just imagine, and I say this as a father of a man who won the Bronze Star, the conspicuous service medal, and lost his life in Iraq. Imagine the courage, the daring, and the genuine sacrifice — the genuine sacrifice they all made.”
President Biden’s son Beau joined the Delaware National Guard in 2003, and served in the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps, deploying to Iraq for a year in 2008. He passed away in 2015 after a battle with glioblastoma — the same kind of brain tumor that the late Senator John McCain (R-AZ) was battling when he passed away in August of 2018.
President Biden has speculated in the past that toxins arising from burn pits — which are used to incinerate waste in forward operating areas — may have played a role in causing his son’s cancer.
“Because of his exposure to burn pits — in my view, I can’t prove it yet, he came back with stage four glioblastoma. Eighteen months he lived, knowing he was going to die,” Biden said in a 2019 speech.
In 2021, the Biden administration announced a plan to better understand and treat service members whose health conditions may be related to working in toxic environments. “Anybody who was anywhere near those burn pits, that’s all they have to show and they get covered, they get all their health care covered,” Biden said.