FORMER US SENATOR FRED THOMPSON HAS PASSED AWAY.
Former U.S. Senator from Tennessee Fred Dalton Thompson has passed away at the age of 73 in Nashville, TN. The former Senator, Republican presidential candidate, and actor who starred in the TV series “Law and Order,” and movies “The Hunt for Red October,” “In the Line of Fire,” “Die Hard II” and “Secretariat” passed away on Sunday in Nashville, TN from lymphoma. According to accounts Thompson died peacefully surrounded by his family.
As Hot Air remembers Fred Thompson, in 1994, Thompson parlayed that familiarity to a seat in the US Senate, taking Al Gore’s seat in a special election. He won again in 1996 for a full term, but retired from the Senate in 2002 to return to his acting career. In 2007, though, with the Republican presidential field wide open, Thompson decided to run for the nomination, only to find that he’d gotten in too late to have an impact.
Fred Thompson – 1942 – 2015, Rest in Peace
Fred Thompson, a former U.S. senator from Tennessee, GOP presidential candidate, Watergate attorney and actor who starred on the television drama “Law and Order,” died on Sunday in Nashville. He was 73.
Mr. Thompson died after a recurrence of lymphoma, according to a prepared statement issued by the Thompson family. Mr Thompson, who had recently purchased a house in Nashville to return to Tennessee, was first diagnosed with cancer in 2004.
“It is with a heavy heart and a deep sense of grief that we share the passing of our brother, husband, father, and grandfather who died peacefully in Nashville surrounded by his family,” the Thompson family’s statement reads.
“Fred once said that the experiences he had growing up in small-town Tennessee formed the prism through which he viewed the world and shaped the way he dealt with life,” his family said. “Fred stood on principle and common sense, and had a deep love for and connection with the people across Tennessee whom he had the privilege to serve in the United States Senate. He enjoyed a hearty laugh, a strong handshake, a good cigar, and a healthy dose of humility. Fred was the same man on the floor of the Senate, the movie studio, or the town square of Lawrenceburg, his home.”
Fred Thompson Talks about the Reagan Revolution in 2008 and the battle for the hearts and minds of the GOP
Thompson was also a GOP presidential candidate in 2008, as well as a Watergate attorney. He played D.A. Arthur Branch on “Law & Order” for five years, and also appeared on the show’s spinoffs “Special Victims Unit” and “Trial by Jury” as the character.
Thompson, who was born in Sheffield, Ala., shifted between politics and acting frequently throughout his life, but he gained a degree of visibility in 1973, when he served as minority counsel to the Senate Watergate Committee, after having managed the reelection campaign of Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.), the top Republican on the committee.
At one hearing, he asked former White House aide Alexander Butterfield, “Mr. Butterfield, are you aware of the installation of any listening devices in the Oval Office of the president?” Butterfield’s confirmation of a secret recording system was a key turning point in the scandal that eventually led to President Richard M. Nixon’s resignation.
Four years later, when Thompson was working in private practice in Tennessee, Thompson represented Marie Ragghianti, former chair of the Tennessee Parole Board, in a wrongful termination case against the state’s governor. The trial exposed a scandal in which cash payments were being given to state officials in exchange for clemency.
The case was the subject of a book and a 1985 movie, “Marie,” and started Thompson’s acting career when he was offered the part of playing himself.
After enjoying a number of character parts, Thompson ran for Senate in a 1994 special election, in a campaign in which he drove around in a red pickup truck to try to show his populist appeal. He was reelected in 1996, but declined to run for reelection in 2002.
In 2007, he was viewed as a leading contender for the GOP presidential nomination in the months before he officially announced his candidacy on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.” But his campaign sputtered, and he dropped out after just a few primaries.
One of my Favorite Fred Thompson moments … Thompson responds to Michael Moore