Scott Apley, a Texas Republican leader who has been vocal about his anti-mask and anti-vaccination views, died on Wednesday from COVID-19.

“The Texas Republican Party is incredibly saddened to learn of the passing of State Republican Executive Committee (SREC) Member Scott Apley from Senate District 11,” The Texas Republican Party said in a statement. ” Scott was a first-term member of the SREC who had a long history of conservative political activism. He leaves behind a wife and infant child. The entire staff of the Republican Party of Texas grieves his loss and extends our prayers of peace and comfort for Scott’s family in this difficult time.”

His passing came to attention as he had shared a meme on his social media questioning the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine just five days before he died.

“In 6 months, we’ve gone from the vax ending the pandemic-to you can still get covid even if vaxxed-to you can pass covid onto others even if vaxxed-to you can still die of covid even if vaxxed-to the unvaxxed are killing the vaxxed,” the meme says.

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Apley was a Dickinson City Council member and State Republican Executive Committee member. He was only 45 years old.

“It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share the news of the death of H Scott Apley, our friend, our Patriot in Arms, our State Republican Executive Committeeman, Precinct Chair, Dickinson City Council Member,” Galveston County Republican Party said in a Facebook statement. “A tragedy. Please pray for Melissa and Reid and their family. God remains in control although this is yet another tough one to swallow.”

Following his passing, a GoFundMe page was set up to support Apley’s family regarding his funeral expenses.

“He leaves behind his wife, Melissa, who is COVID positive, as well as their infant son Reid,” according to the fundraiser, which has so far raised almost $15,000 of its $30,000 goal. “Your donations are greatly appreciated and will help the family as they get through this difficult period.”

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