Former state Rep. Ted Kinney, a former soldier who focused on veterans' issues and crime while in the legislature, has died at the age of 76.
Kinney died Nov. 2 at the Haymount Rehabilitation and Nursing Center from complications with diabetes, his son, Bob, said Wednesday. His funeral will be today in Fayetteville.
He joined the General Assembly in 1993 and served three terms, losing a re-election bid in 2000 to current Rep. Marvin Lucas.
Kinney helped get money for a veterans' home in Fayetteville that opened in 1999, The Fayetteville Observer reported.
Kinney was born in South Carolina and moved to Fayetteville in 1949 to join the Army. After retirement, he got involved in local Democratic politics.
“The Army had a way and civilians had a way, and the Army way was the right way,” said Clinton Harris, a longtime friend and fellow community activist. “I tried to get him to learn the civilian way, but he stuck with his Army way.”
He tried to change the way Cumberland County elected its commissioners because some said it diluted the votes of black residents.
Kinney also helped lead an effort to establish a park honoring the late Martin Luther King Jr.
Kinney suffered a stroke in 1999 and never fully regained his speech, Bob Kinney said.
Kinney's funeral will be at noon today at John Wesley United Methodist Church, with burial to follow in Spring Lake.
Kinney is survived by his wife, Thelma.