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Former CA lawmaker, US Rep. Mervyn Dymally dies

Associated Press Modified: October 8, 2012 at 1:16 am •  Published: October 8, 2012
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Such allegations, including unsubstantiated claims he would be indicted by the federal government, eventually led to his defeat in his 1978 bid for re-election as lieutenant governor.

Dymally maintained that he never acted illegally and said the probes were politically motivated. No charges were ever filed.

"We politicians ... think we are very important, but we are not that important, and regular people don't seem to be that concerned about a lot of the legislation that we pass," he told the Associated Press in a 2002 interview. "My legacy has not been my legislation. My legacy has been my openness."

In his final years, the tireless Dymally lead a health institute at the Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science in South Los Angeles. The university's nursing school bears his name.

"His dedication to public service continued when he left politics and his legacy will be long remembered," Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a statement. He called Dymally "a trailblazer in every sense of the word."

Besides his wife, Dymally was survived by his son Mark and daughter Lynn.

Plans for a memorial service were pending.