MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Owen Drake, the Republican state representative representing Leeds has died after a battle with cancer.
Drake was elected to the Alabama legislature in 2006 and was re-elected by the people of House District 45 to serve a second term when he passed away. He previously served in the United States Air Force for 32 years, retiring as a chief master sergeant in 1988. He also worked as a police detective for the City of Fairfield and as communications director for the Jefferson County Commission.
House Speaker Mike Hubbard reacted to the news of Drake's death Monday morning issuing this statement:
"Susan and I were saddened to hear of Representative Drake's death, but also relieved to think of the peace and comfort he now knows. Owen was a good, Christian man who gave decades of selfless service to his country, state and local community. He was a tireless worker for his district, and wouldn't even let a painful and exhausting battle with cancer keep him from tending to his constituents' needs. I know I speak on behalf of my fellow Members when I say Owen will be greatly missed and always remembered in the Alabama House of Representatives."
Democratic Party Chairman Judge Mark Kennedy also issued a statement on Drake's death:
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the Drake family after the passing of Representative Owen Drake of Leeds earlier this morning after a long battle with cancer. Though we may not have always agreed on the issues, Representative Drake was an honorable legislator who committed much of his life to serving the people of Leeds and his district, and his leadership and work ethic will be greatly missed in the House."
Governor Robert Bentley remember his friend, as well:
"Owen and I spent many days serving alongside one another in the Alabama House of Representatives. He was a dedicated public servant throughout his life, not only serving as an elected official, but also in serving his country in the Air Force. My prayers are with his wife Kathye, his children and grandchildren. Representative Drake was a true servant of the people, but most of all he was a good friend and will be greatly missed."
Drake is survived by his wife, Kathye, and six children. He was 75 years old.