President Joe Biden paid tribute to Walter “Fritz” Mondale after the former vice president passed away on Monday night.
In a statement with his wife Jill, Biden called Mondale his “dear friend and mentor.”
“When I arrived in the United States Senate in 1973, Walter Mondale was one of the first people to greet me,” the President said. “Through his work as a Senator, he showed me what was possible.”
Biden praised Mondale as “unwavering in his pursuit of progress” who was his “trusted guide” when Barack Obama asked Biden to consider being his vice president in the 2008 presidential elections.
“It was Walter Mondale who defined the vice presidency as a full partnership, and helped provide a model for my service,” Biden said.
Mondale, who served as vice president under President Jimmy Carter before unsuccessfully running for office against Ronald Reagan in 1984, died in his home in Minneapolis, Minnesota at age 93.
Carter called Mondale an “invaluable partner” in a statement on Monday.
“During our administration, Fritz used his political skill and personal integrity to transform the vice presidency into a dynamic, policy-driving force that had never been seen before and still exists today,” the former president said.