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Senator Thomas Morahan, 78, Passes

New York City, July 12 — Senator Thomas Morahan, who served for 11 years representing Rockland County and part of Orange County in the NYS Senate, passed away today after a six month battle with leukemia. His family was with him at New York Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center at 4:30p, the time of his death.

During his tenure in the the New York State Senate, Morahan introduced 230 bills which were signed into law.  As chairman of the Senate’s Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Committee, Morahan championed Timothy’s Law, a bill which requires insurers to provide additional mental health coverage. He announced his decision not to seek re-election in May.

“His bi-partisan efforts and spearheading legislation such as Timothy’s Law and Jonathan’s Law made Senator Morahan a champion for all his constituents and especially those most vulnerable amongst us,” said NY Governor David Patterson. The governor has directed New York State government buildings to fly their flags at half-staff on Friday, July 16, in honor of Morahan.

“One of his lasting legacies was his insistence on bipartisanship and non-partisanship in state government, and he strived to achieve that and succeeded in doing so more times than not,” said Senate GOP Leader Dean Skelos.

After a career as a manager at New York Telephone and Orange and Rockland, Morahan was elected to the Rockland County Legislature in 1977 and was elected to the state Assembly three years later. Morahan returned to the Rockland County Legislature 1984. In 1999, he was elected to NY State Senate in a special election.

“His years of service to the people of the 38th District and of New York was exemplary,” says Clarkstown Clerk David Carlucci. “I believe I speak for all residents of Rockland and Orange Counties when I say that we have been proud to call him ‘Senator’ over the last decade,” he said.

‘€œWe have lost a great ally who was motivated by the needs of the people of Rockland and Orange Counties and New York State,’€ said Rockland County Legislature Chairwoman Harriet Cornell.  ‘€œI was privileged to work with him in the County Legislature and during the many years he served on the State Legislature.  He was an approachable and beloved public figure, frank and outspoken in his views, precise and determined in his actions on all matters that concerned the well-being of his constituency,’€ she said.

Morahan was a tireless advocate for citizens with mental disabilities and actively involved in Big Brothers, Big Sisters, the New City Rotary Club and supported veterans’ organizations.

Sources: NY Daily News, Journal News, Wikipedia, Senator Morahan’s Office
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