Former Texas justice, congressman Hightower dies

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by PAUL J. WEBER / The Associated Press

khou.com

Posted on August 3, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Updated Saturday, Aug 3 at 7:40 PM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Former Texas Supreme Court Justice Jack Hightower, a Democrat who also served a decade in Congress under three different presidents, has died. He was 86.

Osler McCarthy, a spokesman for the state’s high court, said Hightower died Saturday in Austin. McCarthy said Hightower had Parkinson’s disease.

Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson said the state has “lost a true champion among its public servants.”

Hightower began his political career in both the state House and Senate before being elected to Congress in 1975. He won a seat on the court in 1988 and stayed until 1996, and remains the state’s last justice with legislative experience.

Hightower is survived by his wife, Colleen, and three daughters.

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