Robert LaMay, a Washington state trooper who rejected a Covid-19 vaccine mandate died of the disease on Friday, according to Fox News. LaMay had been in the headlines after quitting his job at the Washington State Patrol instead of conforming to the mandate implemented by Governor of Washington, Jay Inslee.
Inslee had issued a directive that required state workers to be completely vaccinated by October 18, 2021, as a condition of employment.
As a result, LaMay retired from his trooper duties in 2021 and spoke a final sign off, stating that during the two decades of long service, he had worked while being ill and had buried a lot of his friends.
A video of his sign off soon began trending on the internet, featuring his infamous line, “Jay Inslee can kiss my a**.”
The video also featured on Last Week Tonight, an HBO show hosted by John Oliver. Oliver also condemned LaMay’s anti-vax stance and a few others who also chose resignation over vaccination.
In conversation with Fox News, LaMay had elucidated his stance and stated, “we don’t do vaccines, we don’t do flu shots or any of that stuff.”
LaMay further added that he had a religious exemption for the vaccine. “We worked 18 months without having any type of issues and now suddenly we have to have these mandatory vaccines. Making people do this or you lose your job was ridiculous,” he had said.
LaMay passed away at the age of 50.
In a press release posted by Washington State Patrol on Twitter, Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste stated that he was “deeply saddened”. He also shared how he paid a tribute to LaMay for his service and when he quit, many “were disappointed to see him leave the agency.”
Batiste concluded, “This agency’s prayers and remembrances are with his family and loved ones,” the statement said, “His service to this state and agency will be long remembered and appreciated.”