A Democratic Senator in Italy, Bruno Astorre, died late Friday morning of an apparent suicide after he jumped out of his office window, Italian media sources reported.
The prosecutor's office in Rome has opened an investigation into Astorre's death to find out what happened and whether an autopsy is needed.
Astorre, 59, was secretary of the Lazio Democratic Party as well as serving in the Senate.
Astorre was recently released from the hospital where he had received treatment for for some health problems. No specifics on his diagnosis were given.
Italian leaders and officials made statements to the press and on social media about the death of Astorre.
The president of the Senate, Ignazio La Russa, expressed condolences to Senate Democratic Leader Simon Malpezzi. La Russa also ordered flags at various government buildings to be flown at half-staff.
Colleagues and members of the Democrat Party in Italy met together in the Senate building on Friday after the news of Astorre's death broke to talk, hug, and cry together.
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni offered condolences as well, saying, “I am deeply disturbed by the news of the passing of Bruno Astorre, senator and secretary of the PD in Lazio. A passionate and loyal adversary, a decent person. On behalf of myself and of the Government, I embrace the pain of his wife, family and his political community."
“We are shocked and deeply saddened by the tragic news of the death of Senator Bruno Astorre. The whole democratic community gathers around his wife and his family, friends and all his colleagues,” secretary of the Democrat party Elly Schlein said.
Democrat party leader and former Prime Minister Enrico Letta said on social media, "I am astonished at the tragic news of Bruno Astorre's death. I can't find words in the face of such a drama. There is silence. There is prayer. I embrace his loved ones."
Founding Democrat Party member Goffredo Bettini posted a long tribute on Facebook.
"He passed away in the saddest, most lonely, painful and disconcerting way. Bruno Astorre was an important leader of the party in Rome and Lazio right up to the last minute. I would even say, in many respects, decisive. Senator, regional secretary, deeply rooted and influential personality, a very solid point of reference especially in the province of Rome and for many administrators and mayors."
"He had a feeling of inadequacy. He felt a form of hidden depression. He overcame that phase. But I know from personal experience that the faults of the soul can be restored, but never heal completely. They are wounds that continue to live, to produce, to torment. They do not heal like the skin of the body."
Many others who knew Astorre also posted their own messages about how his death has deeply affected them and their community.