Lawrence Jacobsen dies at age 85

Retired State Sen. Lawrence Jacobsen, who served in the Nevada Legislature longer than anyone in history, died Wednesday morning at his Minden residence. He was 85.

Jacobsen served 16 years in the Assembly and 24 years in the Senate before redistricting forced him out of office in 2002.

Jacobsen had been in declining health since he suffered a fall a year ago. But he continued to make the public appearances for which he was well known.

Most recently he and his wife, Betty, attended the Minden centennial celebration on July 2 at the town park across from the Jacobsen home where the family lived for more than 50 years

In an interview after his retirement in 2003, Jacobsen said he was proudest of his work on behalf of the state's veterans, the Department of Corrections honor camp system, preservation of the Stewart Indian School and Marlette Lake.

Jacobsen, who was 19 and in the Navy at the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, spent almost every Veteran's Day in a grade school classroom where he shared his memories of that terrible day and his love for his country.

Gov. Kenny Guinn issued a statement Wednesday praising Jacobsen for his long years of service.

"Nevada lost a treasured public servant today," Guinn said. "I lost a friend and Nevada lost a role model for future generations. As a decorated survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor, he demonstrated how to translate the experience of war into a long, successful life filled with integrity, determination and caring."

Guinn offered condolences on behalf of the people of Nevada to the Jacobsen family.


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