Updated at 6:20 p.m., 8/14/16

WASHINGTON – Marion “Christopher” Barry Jr., the son of the late D.C. mayor, has died at age 36.

Raymone Bain, a spokeswoman for Cora Masters Barry — the widow of the late Marion Barry — said Chris Barry died early Sunday, but couldn’t confirm his cause of his death. The Washington Post reports that sources close to the family say he is believed to have overdosed on synthetic marijuana.

He was found by his girlfriend and transported to George Washington University Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The elder Barry served four terms as mayor of the nation’s capital before representing the poorest section of the city on the D.C. Council during the last 10 years of his life. He died in November 2014.

Chris Barry unsuccessfully ran for his late father’s seat on the D.C. Council in a special election in 2015. He also ran a small construction business, and was on site at some of his projects as late as Saturday.

Cora Masters Barry said Chris’s sudden death is “beyond comprehension. My heart is broken. I am in shock.”

WUSA’s Bruce Johnson said Chris struggled with addiction issues, just like his father.

Barry is survived by his grandmother Polly Lee Harris.

His former campaign advisor, Liz Matory, told the Post that Barry was dealing with a number of personal issues, including moving to and from an apartment after losing his father’s house when he was unable to make rent.

“There’s so many things that are broken. There’s so much stress on his mind and spirit,” she said, adding that he was taking time to focus on spiritual peace and sobriety. “By losing the house, he felt another loss because that was his place that he’d go to remember his dad.”

Some of D.C.’s top elected officials also weighed in on the younger Barry’s passing:

“Christopher Barry’s untimely passing is a sad ending to the Marion Barry legacy,” D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson said in a statement. “Christopher never asked for the burden that comes with being part of a famous politician’s family. We know he cared deeply about our city – his hometown from birth to death. And that his parents cared deeply for him.

“My condolences to those whom he is survived.”


This was written using content from The Associated Press, Copyright 2016. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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