A longtime lobbyist at the state Capitol who also served in the Legislature was remembered Friday for his friendliness across the political aisle.
Kenneth Nance, who represented District 91 in south Oklahoma in the House of Representatives from 1968 to 1978, died Thursday. He was 71.
“He was one of the most gracious gentlemen I have ever met,” said Rep. Don Armes, R-Faxon. “I firmly believe that Ken Nance could quietly kill your bill and you would still feel compelled to write him a ‘thank you' note for the political lesson.”
Nance, who had spent the past year battling a brain tumor and was recovering, died from a lung infection, a family member said Friday.
Survivors include his wife, Barbara; sons, Berry Nance and his wife, Donna; Darren Nance; Brian Nance and his wife, Michelle; and five grandchildren.
His father was looking forward to working his 50th straight year at the Capitol, Brian Nance said. He started working on the House staff and was an assistant attorney general before being elected to the House. He unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for attorney general in 1978.
An attorney, he built up his law practice after serving in the Capitol and in 1979 started his consulting firm. His list of clients included AT&T and its subsidiaries, Pfizer Inc., R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Walmart and the Wine Institute.
Brian Nance, who also is a lobbyist, said he and his father worked together at the Capitol for 14 years.
“He loved being a lawyer, he loved being a lobbyist,” he said. “It was his whole life.”
Kenneth Nance graduated from Capitol Hill High School in 1959 and earned both his bachelor's and law degree from Oklahoma City University.
Visitation is set from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday at Vondel L. Smith & Sons Mortuary at South Lakes, 4000 SW 119. The family will be there from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday.
The funeral is set for 11 a.m. Wednesday at Trinity Church of the Nazarene, 7301 S Walker Ave.