AUSTIN, Texas – Former Gov. Ann Richards, the witty and flamboyant Democrat who went from homemaker to national political celebrity, died Wednesday night after a battle with cancer, a family spokeswoman said. She was 73.
She died at home surrounded by her family, the spokeswoman said. Richards was found to have esophageal cancer in March and underwent chemotherapy treatments.
The silver-haired, silver-tongued Richards said she entered politics to help others — especially women and minorities who were often ignored by Texas’ male-dominated establishment.
“I did not want my tombstone to read, ‘She kept a really clean house.’ I think I’d like them to remember me by saying, ‘She opened government to everyone,'” Richards said shortly before leaving office in January 1995.
Say what you want about her politics and how she governed, but it’s undeniable that Ann Richards was a firecracker who did not hesitate to say what was on her mind. From write-ups I’ve seen about her life, she lived it to the fullest.
RIP, Governor Richards.