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Lawton's Death Stuns Political Establishment

The sudden death today of Del. Jane Lawton, the county's cable administrator and a four-term Chevy Chase mayor, has reverberated throughout the state and county political establishment. Below are tributes from local and statewide leaders. Please feel free to share your thoughts.

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley:

"We were all shocked and saddened by the sudden news of Delegate Jane Lawton's passing this morning. Delegate Lawton was a wonderful public servant, a tireless advocate for our environment, the Chesapeake Bay, and affordable housing, who worked hard for her constituents and the people of Montgomery County. On behalf of all the people of our State, I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences and prayers to her entire family, her friends, and those she represented in District 18."

House Speaker Michael E. Busch:

"Jane Lawton was a lifelong public servant who dedicated her energy and talents to enriching the lives of others. When she came to the Maryland House of Delegates in 2005, Jane had an instant impact on the legislature and distinguished herself as a member of the Environmental Matters Committee. She was a tireless advocate who worked to improve the Chesapeake Bay, create sustainable communities and provide more opportunities for affordable housing across the State. This is a tremendous loss for the General Assembly and the people of Maryland. Her family is in our thoughts and prayers."

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett:

"Jane Lawton's sudden death this morning is a significant and tragic loss -- not only to her family and friends -- but to Montgomery County government and every resident in this County and across the state. Jane was a dedicated public servant who was Montgomery County's cable franchise administrator, as well as a delegate to the Maryland General Assembly. Her expertise in cable matters was unprecedented, and she was an outstanding member of our delegation. We have lost a gifted and talented individual who contributed to this community in many ways as an administrator and elected official. Her absence will be deeply felt.
I extend my heartfelt sympathies to Jane's family and friends."

Montgomery County Council President Marilyn Praisner:

"I am stunned to learn that my dear friend Jane Lawton has died. Jane and I worked together many years on cable and telecommunications issues, both at the national and local level. She was a talented individual who served Montgomery County extremely well as a cable administrator and as a member of the State District 18 Delegation. As president of NATOA, she provided strong national leadership and brought significant recognition to Montgomery County. Words cannot express our loss. I want to extend my deepest condolences to Jane's daughters and her family. I loved Jane Lawton and I will miss her greatly."

Congressman Al Wynn:

"Delegate Lawton was an outstanding legislator and a wonderful person. Her smile, enthusiasm, and commitment to her constituents reflect the best characteristics of public service. Our heartfelt condolences go out to her family. She will be sorely missed in Montgomery County and throughout the State of Maryland."

Michael Cryor, Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party:

"We have lost both a rising legislative star and a long-time Democratic pillar of energy and strength in Montgomery County. Jane Lawton became a Delegate in 2005 but she was one of the most remarkable members of the Democratic Party's long-time community of experienced and enthusiastic volunteer and community leaders. Her work in politics and government contributed greatly to making Chevy Chase, Montgomery County and Maryland a better place. Our prayers go out to her family, friends and everyone who knew her because of her tireless strength and persistence on behalf of the people and issues in which she believed."

By Phyllis Jordan  |  November 29, 2007; 5:21 PM ET
Categories:  Ann Marimow  
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