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Statements from Chairman Burn, Sen. Costa and Sen. Leach on the Passing of Senator O’Pake

Statements from Chairman Burn, Sen. Costa and Sen. Leach on the Passing of Senator O’Pake

Harrisburg, PA – Today, Senator Michael O’Pake passed away. Sen. O’Pake began his service in the Senate in 1972. Before his election to the Senate, he served two terms in the state House of Representatives.

Democratic Party Chairman Jim Burn:

“Senator Michael O’Pake was a tireless advocate for the people of his district, especially children and senior citizens. Senator O’Pake’s time in office will serve as an inspiration and example for many years to come and all of us will long remember his contributions to his community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Senator O’Pake’s family during this difficult time.”

Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa:

“Senator O’Pake committed his life to public service and making life better for all the citizens of Pennsylvania and his beloved Berks County. Senator O’Pake was a fighter for those in need. From seniors who needed help in paying for life-saving prescription drugs to children that benefitted from his work in creating the state’s children’s health insurance program, Senator O’Pake was a leader who made a difference.

“Senator O’Pake was the first chair of the Senate Aging and Youth Committee, wrote the protective services law for children and fought tirelessly for juvenile justice reform. He also was a leader in trying to make college more affordable for Pennsylvania students.

“Mike was a friend and colleague who could be counted on for kind words and sage advice in the most trying circumstances. He worked across the aisle and built bridges trying to find solutions that help all Pennsylvanians.”

Senate Democratic Campaign Committee Chairman, Senator Daylin Leach:

“Today, the Senate did not just lose its longest serving member in Mike O’Pake, but a friend and a mentor–not just me, but to many who have passed through the halls of the Capitol. His leadership and guidance will be missed as the legislative session begins.”

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