September 17, 2011 / 6:35 PM / 6 years ago

Eleanor Mondale dies of brain cancer at age 51

MINNEAPOLIS (Reuters) - Eleanor Mondale Poling, 51, daughter of former Vice President Walter Mondale, died at her Minnesota home early on Saturday after a six-year battle with brain cancer.

<p>Television personality Eleanor Mondale arrives at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium for the 49th Annual Emmy Awards September 14, 1997. Reuters/Fred Prouser</p>

Mondale died in her sleep with her husband and dogs at her side, according to a statement posted on her journal page at the website CaringBridge.org.

“Early Saturday morning, September 17th, 2011, our dearest sweet Eleanor passed away from this world,” the journal entry said. “Eleanor Mondale Poling lived bravely, without regret or fear, with such amazing strength and grace, for 6 years after being diagnosed with brain cancer in 2005.”

Mondale was the daughter of Joan and Walter Mondale, the 42nd vice president of the United States under President Jimmy Carter.

She also was the ex-wife of Chicago Bears football player Keith Van Horne.

Married two more times, Mondale in 2005 wed Minneapolis musician Chan Poling.

A graduate of St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, Mondale’s career included minor acting roles on television shows and stints as a TV news reporter and radio co-host.

“From the shy teenager I first met, Eleanor transformed -- and transcended! -- into a very beautiful, poised, multi-talented, and accomplished woman,” said Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton in a statement mourning her death. “She loved her family, friends, and animals, as she loved life.”

Mondale’s death follows that of the daughter of another nationally known Democrat. Kara Kennedy Allen, the only daughter of the late U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy, died on Friday in Washington.

Kennedy, also 51, had been battling lung cancer since 2003.

Additional reporting by Barbara Goldberg; Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst

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