Louisiana's governor during Hurricane Katrina has passed away.
Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, the first female governor of Louisiana, died Sunday, Gov. John Bel Edwards said.
Blanco passed away at the age of 76 surrounded by her husband, Raymond, her children and her family at St. Joseph's Hospice Carpenter House in Lafayette, La., Edwards said in a statement.
In 2017, she announced that she was diagnosed with ocular melanoma and in December of 2018 she said it had metastasized.
"There is no escape," she said during a speech in 2018. "The monster is not far down the road," the Monroe News Star reported.
Edwards said the state owes a "debt of gratitude" to Blanco for all she had done to improve the lives of its citizens.
Her governorship was early marred by criticism of being indecisive following the government's response to Hurricane Katrina, which hit the state in 2005 resulting in more than 1,800 dead and over $100 billion in damages.
In deciding not to run for re-election, she said it was in the best interest of the people of Louisiana.