Lawmakers and government officials at both state and national levels were saddened last week to learn that former Republican Kentucky state Senator C.B. Embry Jr. died at age 81 following a lengthy cancer battle, as the Associated Press reported.
Embry's death was confirmed by Kentucky auditor of public accounts, Mike Harmon, who said in a statement, "I'm saddened to learn of the passing of former State Senator and State Representative C.B. Embry. C.B. Made a lifelong commitment to being a servant leader, driven by his faith, his family, and his love of our great Commonwealth," as Louisville NBC affiliate WAVE noted.
The sad event came only days after Embry submitted a formal letter of resignation from his state Senate post to Robert Stivers, president of the body, as the Associated Press reported separately at the time.
Earlier in the year, Embry declared his intention to step down at some point in the near future, citing his ongoing fight against cancer, but he had continued to travel to the state capital amid treatments to cast votes in recent months, fulfilling the duty he felt he owed to his constituency.
In his resignation letter to Stivers, Embry wrote, "It has been an honor of a lifetime to serve the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the good of the people of District 6. During my time in the Senate, I can truly say that I and my colleagues worked each day to make Kentucky an even greater state."
First elected to his Senate seat in 2014, Embry held a series of committee roles, and prior to his resignation, chaired the Veterans, Military Affairs, and Public Protection Committee, according to the AP.
In addition to his time in the Senate, Embry also served as a member of state House and was the mayor of the town of Beaver Dam, Kentucky, for three years.
The lawmaker's passing spurred a flood of tributes and condolences from a host of prominent figures, with Stivers himself declaring, according to Lexington ABC affiliate WTVQ, "C.B. Embry was a true gentleman and the consummate public servant, taking the duty and responsibility to represent the people until the very end."
U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) was among those paying homage to Embry, adding, "For more than fifty years, until just this week, he dutifully served the people of Kentucky as Mayor, County Judge-Executive, State Representative, and State Senator. I join with the chorus of Kentuckians he touched throughout his long career in mourning his loss."