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Former Brazil vice president dies

Jose Alencar served under former president Lula for eight years
Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva adjusts the wheelchair of his former Vice-President Jose Alencar as Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff watches during a ceremony on January 25, 2011. (MAURICIO LIMA/AFP/Getty Images)

After a struggle against abdominal cancer that lasted 13 years, Brazil’s 79-year-old former vice president Jose Alencar died yesterday. He left office with president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva just a few months ago, but spent part of his last few months as VP in the hospital after suffering a heart attack. His body is being transported to Brasilia, the country's capital. Current President Dilma Rousseff and former president Lula will cut short a trip to Portugal to return for his funeral. Lula heard the news just before he was to receive an honorary doctorate from a university there. He cried and told reporters Alencar was an “extraordinary man.”