June 5, 2007 in Nation/World

Wyoming senator with leukemia dies

Mary Clare Jalonick Associated Press
 
The Spokesman-Review photo

Thomas
(Full-size photo)

WASHINGTON – Wyoming Sen. Craig Thomas, a three-term conservative Republican who stayed clear of the Washington limelight and political catfights, died Monday. He was 74.

The senator’s family issued a statement saying he died Monday evening at National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

He had been receiving chemotherapy for acute myeloid leukemia.

Just before the 2006 election, Thomas was hospitalized with pneumonia and had to cancel his last campaign stops. He nonetheless won with 70 percent of the vote, monitoring the election from his hospital bed.

Two days after the election, Thomas announced that he had just been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.

Gov. Dave Freudenthal, a Democrat, will appoint a successor from one of three finalists chosen by the state Republican party.

“Wyoming had no greater advocate, taxpayers had no greater watchdog, and rural America had no greater defender than Craig Thomas,” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday night.

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