August 22, 2013

Beau Biden returning to Delaware with father

The vice president's office said Beau Biden would fly to Delaware aboard Air Force Two as Joe Biden returns to Wilmington.

By Josh Lederman and Randall Chase / The Associated Press

DOVER, Del. — Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden planned to return home with his father, Vice President Joe Biden, aboard Air Force Two following a successful medical procedure at a Houston cancer center.

The vice president's office said Beau Biden would fly to Delaware aboard the aircraft Thursday as Joe Biden returns to Wilmington, Del.

Beau Biden underwent a medical procedure at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center on Tuesday. The procedure came more than two weeks after emergency dispatchers were called to the vice president's Delaware home, where his son was staying, in response to a report of a possible stroke.

Three years ago, Beau Biden suffered a minor stroke.

In a statement released by the White House, the vice president and his wife Jill said their son underwent "a successful procedure," but they did not provide any details.

"He is in great shape and is going to be discharged tomorrow and heading home to Delaware," they said in the statement Wednesday. "He will follow up with his local physicians in the coming weeks."

The White House declined to answer any questions about what procedure was performed, including whether it was diagnostic or therapeutic in nature.

Beau Biden, 44, was hospitalized last week after becoming weak and disoriented while on a family vacation in Indiana.

Biden was initially admitted to Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. He traveled the next day to the Philadelphia hospital where he had been treated for the minor stroke in 2010 to consult with his doctor. He spent last weekend at home in Wilmington before going to Houston, where he was admitted at the MD Anderson Cancer Center.

The Delaware Department of Justice released a statement saying the younger Biden had spoken Wednesday afternoon with his chief deputy and with the state prosecutor about several issues, including efforts to fight violent crime in Wilmington, and that he would speak with them again Thursday after returning to Wilmington.

It was not immediately clear when Beau Biden would return to work. He was not available for comment and Jason Miller, a spokesman for the Delaware Department of Justice, declined to elaborate beyond the written statement.

A hospital spokeswoman said Wednesday afternoon that officials had no additional information.

Authorities in Delaware, however, confirmed that emergency responders were called to the vice president's house, where Beau Biden has been living, two weeks ago.

A county dispatch center log indicates that on Aug. 1, someone at the vice president's home was reported to be possibly having a stroke and apparently not alert. Beau Biden has been staying at his father's Greenville home while his own house is renovated.

Rickie Clark, a staff supervisor with the Cranston Heights Fire Co., confirmed Wednesday that county dispatchers received a call for help from Joe Biden's home. However, he refused to provide further details.

The dispatch log on the fire department's website shows two references to the vice president's home on Aug. 1, one at 9:25 p.m. and another about a minute and a half later. Both cite "Cva-Not Alert," indicating that a person was in distress and apparently not alert or responsive to his or her surroundings. Clark said "Cva" is shorthand for cerebrovascular accident, or stroke.

The younger Biden has posted two photos of himself in recent days — one of him smiling with his father Sunday, the other of him smiling with his wife, Hallie, on Tuesday.

"Touched by all your well wishes--thank you. Nice evening in Houston w/ Hallie; will share update when we have it," said the tweet accompanying the photo with his wife.

The White House said Vice President Biden had canceled scheduled appearances in Rhode Island and Maine on Thursday to remain in Houston with his son and other family members. The vice president is still scheduled to join President Barack Obama in Biden's hometown of Scranton, Pa., on Friday during the second day of an Obama bus tour to discuss college costs.

Beau Biden is the eldest son of Joe Biden. After the 1972 accident that killed his first wife and daughter and critically injured Beau Biden and his brother Hunter, the vice president devoted himself to caring for his two sons as a single father.

Beau Biden served a yearlong deployment to Iraq with his Army National Guard unit, returning stateside in 2009.

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