WASHINGTON — Secretary of the Army John McHugh, who is a former North Country congressman, is recovering from a fractured pelvis.
According to a story in the Washington Post, McHugh was riding a bicycle on a bike trail in Northern Virginia Monday when he swerved to avoid a group of pedestrians and crashed.
McHugh spokesman George B. Wright Jr. told the Washington Post that McHugh did not require surgery and was being treated at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
McHugh was undergoing in-patient rehabilitation at Walter Reed and was not expected back to his office until doctors cleared his return, the story said.
The secretary is still working, holding meetings as he recovers from his injuries, Wright said.
The article said that McHugh, a longtime bicycling enthusiast, was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.
McHugh, 63, served as congressman in the 23rd District from 1993 until he was appointed secretary of the Army in the summer of 2009 by President Barack Obama.
The district, which is now the 21st District, covers 12 counties from Lake Ontario in the west to Lake Champlain in the east. McHugh was from Pierrepont Manor near Watertown in Jefferson County.
His selection as Army secretary set off a wild scramble in a special election in November 2009 for his congressional seat.
Democrat Bill Owens of Plattsburgh won that race over Douglas Hoffman, a Conservative Party candidate from Saranac Lake, in a contest that gained national attention. Republican Dierdre “Dede” Scozzafava, a state assemblywoman from Gouverneur, dropped out of the race three days before the election as her poll numbers lagged. She threw her support behind Owens.
Owens won re-election in 2010 by defeating Republican Matt Doheny in a close race that also featured Hoffman as the Conservative Party candidate. Hoffman got 6 percent of the vote despite not campaigning after losing a Republican primary to Doheny.
Doheny, of Watertown, is again trying to defeat Owens in this year’s race for the seat.
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