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Flags lowered for Sen. Robert Byrd

June 29, 2010

KALAMAZOO--By order of Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm, flags on all campuses of Western Michigan University and throughout Michigan are lowered in honor of U.S. Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia, who died Monday, June 28. He was 92.

Byrd, who also served for six years as a U.S. Representative, 1953-58, served longer and cast more congressional votes than any other member of Congress in U.S. history. He also served longer--more than 51 years--as a member of the Senate. He was first sworn in as a senator on the day Alaska became a state, Jan. 3, 1959.

Byrd was the Senate's majority leader for six years, 1977-81 and 1987-89, and was Senate minority leader from 1981 to 1987. As president pro tem of the Senate at the time of his death, he was third in line of succession to the presidency behind Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Consistent with Executive Order 2006-10, flags will remain lowered until after Byrd's funeral Tuesday, July 6.

On U.S. Independence Day, Sunday, July 4, flags should be flown at full-staff. They will return to half-staff Monday, July 5, and can be raised at the end of the day Tuesday.

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Media contact: Thom Myers, (269) 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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