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The Latest: Thad Cochran was ‘senator’s senator,’ Leahy says

June 4, 2019
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U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., laughs as he recalls a conversation with his mother about the late Republican Sen. Thad Cochran, during his remarks at Cochran's funeral service at Northminster Baptist Church in Jackson, Miss., Tuesday, June 4, 2019. Both senators were best of friends. Cochran was 81 when he died Thursday in a veterans' nursing home in Oxford, Mississippi. He was the 10th longest serving senator. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
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U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., laughs as he recalls a conversation with his mother about the late Republican Sen. Thad Cochran, during his remarks at Cochran's funeral service at Northminster Baptist Church in Jackson, Miss., Tuesday, June 4, 2019. Both senators were best of friends. Cochran was 81 when he died Thursday in a veterans' nursing home in Oxford, Mississippi. He was the 10th longest serving senator. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The Latest on the funeral of former U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi (all times local):

1:45 p.m.

Two U.S. senators from different parties say Republican Thad Cochran cared deeply about Mississippi, the state he represented in Washington for more than 45 years.

Republican Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama and Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont spoke Tuesday at their former colleague’s funeral at a church in Jackson, Mississippi. Cochran was 81 when he died Thursday.

Leahy described Cochran as “a senator’s senator” who kept his word and worked across party lines.

Shelby said Cochran “first and foremost, was an Ole Miss rebel.” Cochran earned his bachelor’s degree and law degree from the University of Mississippi.

Cochran was elected to the U.S. House in 1972 and the Senate in 1978. He stepped down in early 2018.

Another funeral for Cochran was held Monday at the Mississippi Capitol.

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12:15 a.m.

A second funeral for former U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran reflects the Mississippi Republican’s reputation for working across party lines.

Republican Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama and Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont are scheduled to speak at the service Tuesday in Jackson.

Cochran was 81 when he died Thursday. He served 45 years in Washington, with the first six in the House and the rest in the Senate. He retired in 2018 as the 10th longest-serving senator in U.S. history.

During a first funeral Monday at the Mississippi Capitol, Gov. Phil Bryant described Cochran as an “all-American boy” who became a leader.

Cochran was chairman of the Appropriations Committee. Shelby now leads that committee with Leahy as vice chairman.

Leahy has described Cochran as one of his dearest friends.

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