FILE - In this July 22, 2020 file photo, Luke Letlow, R-Start, chief of staff to exiting U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, speaks after signing up to run for Louisiana's 5th Congressional District  in Baton Rouge, La. The balance of power in Louisiana's U.S. House delegation — five Republicans and one Democrat — is unlikely to change in Tuesday, Nov. 3 election. But there's a question as to who will represent a heavily Republican district where the incumbent isn't seeking re-election.  (AP Photo/Melinda Deslatte, File)
Congressman-elect Luke Letlow dies after battle with coronavirus
02:06 - Source: CNN
CNN  — 

Julia Letlow, the widow of Republican congressman-elect Luke Letlow who died of coronavirus in late December, announced on Thursday she would run for the seat her husband was set to fill.

“Everything in my life and in my marriage has prepared me for this moment,” she said in a statement posted to Facebook. “My motivation is the passion Luke and I both shared: to better this region that we called home and to leave it a better place for our children and future generations.”

She added: “I am running to continue the mission Luke started — to stand up for our Christian values, to fight for our rural agricultural communities and to deliver real results to move our state forward.”

The special election for Louisiana’s Fifth Congressional District is set for March. The district is reliably Republican.

Luke Letlow died on December 29 after being diagnosed with coronavirus on December 18.

He served as chief of staff to Republican Rep. Ralph Abraham, and won a runoff election last year for the seat after his former boss decided not to run for reelection after three terms in office. Letlow also worked for former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

CNN’s Alex Rogers contributed to this report.