Local Congress members react to the passing of civil rights icon John Lewis

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Civil rights icon John Lewis passed away at the age of 80 on Friday from a battle with pancreatic cancer. 

On Saturday, Representative John Katko (R-NY-24) released a statement regarding the passing of Lewis. 

Today our nation mourns the loss of John Lewis, an icon of the Civil Rights movement who dedicated his life to fighting for equality. He was an American hero who never wavered in his pursuit to make our country a more fair, just place.

During my first term in Congress, I met John Lewis when we sat next to each other at the President’s State of the Union Address. We became friends, and often spoke on the House floor. While we served on different sides of the aisle, he was always willing to hear and consider the perspectives of others. It was an honor to serve alongside him in Congress.

John Lewis will forever be remembered for his strong leadership, his commitment to peaceful action, and the tremendous sacrifices he made to enact change. Robin and I wish his family, loved ones and all who knew and admired him peace during this difficult time.

Representative John Katko (R-NY-24)

U.S. Senator representing New York Kirsten Gillibrand also released the following statement regarding Lewis’ death on Saturday.

Congressman John Lewis was an American legend, whose courage and leadership in the civil rights movement and the House of Representatives laid the foundation for a more equal and just future. It was a tremendous honor to work alongside John Lewis on many important issues, from fighting discrimination to expanding voting rights. While today our country mourns the loss of an icon, John Lewis’ legacy will live on in every American who believes in and fights for freedom and justice.

U.S. Senator Kristen Gillibrand

Congressmen Anthony Brindisi (D-NY-22) and Tom Reed (R-NY-23) took to Twitter to offer their condolences.

John Lewis, a Democrat, served in the House of Representatives for Georgia’s 5th congressional district from 1987 until his death.


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