Ed Koch dies: Former New York City mayor was 88

ed-koch-dies-obituary.jpgFormer New York City Mayor Ed Koch died Friday (Feb. 1) around 2 a.m. local time in New York Presbyterian hospital from congestive heart failure, says spokesman George Arzt. Koch was 88 years old.

The former mayor was initially admitted on Jan. 19, then released after being treated for water in his lungs and legs. However, he was re-admitted on Monday (Jan. 28) with shortness of breath and was moved to intensive care on Thursday. Koch had been battling various health issues since he left the mayor's office in 1990.

Koch was known as someone who pulled no punches. David Dinkins, who succeeded Koch as NYC major, says Koch was "a feisty guy who would tell you what he thinks. Ed was a guy to whom I could turn if I wanted a straight answer."

The Reverence Al Sharpton says in a statement that although they did not agree on many things, Koch "was never a phony or a hypocrite. He would not patronize or deceive you. He said what he meant. He meant what he said. He fought for what he believed. May he rest in peace."

Koch served the city of New York from 1978 to 1989 and prior to that he was a congressman for the state of New York from 1973 to 1977. He was on the New York City Council in the 1960s and served in the Army during World War II.

A documentary about Koch's life is due out in February 2013.
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