RALEIGH (AP) — Kay Hagan, a former bank executive who rose from a budget writer in the North Carolina Legislature to a seat in the U.S. Senate, died Monday. She was 66.

Former Sen. Hagan died of encephalitis, or brain inflammation, caused by Powassan virus, a rare virus spread from ticks to humans, her former Senate spokeswoman Sadie Weiner said.

Ms. Hagan, a Democrat, served a single term in the Senate and lost her 2014 reelection bid to Republican North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis.

She was born in Shelby May 26, 1953. She earned her undergraduate degree from Florida State University in 1975, then earned a law degree from Wake Forest University three years later.

For 10 years, Ms. Hagan worked for NationsBank, which was to become Bank of America, where she became a vice president in the estates and trust division. After being a stay-at-home mother, the niece of former Florida governor and U.S. Sen. Lawton Chiles launched her own political career and won a seat as a Democrat in the North Carolina state Senate in 1998.

Ten years later, Ms. Hagan sought and won the U.S. Senate seat held by Republican Elizabeth Dole.

Although she initially showed reluctance to lend her support, Ms. Hagan backed the Affordable Care Act pushed by President Barack Obama. She also worked to limit payday lending, continuing the work she began as a state senator.

(Previous report)

RALEIGH (AP) — The family of former U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan has died. She was 66.

The family issued a statement Monday said Hagan died unexpectedly Monday morning.

Hagan was a North Carolina Democrat who was elected in elected in 2008 and served one term before she was defeated by Republican Thom Tillis in 2014.

During her time on Capitol Hill, she was a champion of the Affordable Care Act as well as efforts to release documents pertaining to water contamination at Camp Lejeune.

(5) comments

CARTERETISCORRUPT

I don't think, from a governmental achievement viewpoint, she will leave a shadow of leadership.

David Collins

She did wear pretty scarfs .

Core Sounder

well at least she was a shade better than Dole or Edwards.

morehood city res

maybe not, but from a human standpoint i am sure her loved ones will miss her and remember her fondly.

chainsaw

Hey carteret any more than tommie tillis will leave when he is voted out of office!

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