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3 Nov, 2008 22:23

Obama’s gran dies on eve of election

Barack Obama has been coming to terms with the death of his grandmother, who died on Monday after a long illness. The Democratic candidate received the news as he and Republican John McCain made last-ditch efforts to win over undecided voters in swing states.

Madelyn Payne Dunham died on Monday just hours before polls were to open in the presidential election.  She was 86 and had been fighting cancer for several years.

Aware of the pessimistic prognosis, Obama took timeout during the final leg of his election campaign to visit his ill grandmother in Hawaii.

In a joint statement with his sister Maya Soetoro-Ng, the Illinois Sentator said his grandmother “was the cornerstone of their family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility.”

The statement went on to thank all those who had sent flowers, postcards, best wishes and prayers during the family’s difficult time.

Madelyn Payne Dunham will be laid to rest at a private funeral service.