Legislative veteran Max Gruenberg dies in Juneau

Rep. Max Gruenberg was respected for his devotion to the legislative process and to his district in Anchorage. (File Photo: Alaska Public Media.)
Rep. Max Gruenberg was respected for his devotion to the legislative process and to his district in Anchorage. (File Photo: Alaska Public Media.)

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Longtime Representative Max Gruenberg died Sunday in Juneau.

The Anchorage Democrat was 72.

Gruenberg gained bipartisan respect for his skill in crafting legislation.

He was the senior member of the House. He served during two separate periods – from 1985 to 1992 and since 2003.

Gruenberg was born and raised in San Francisco. He was an Eagle Scout.  And he served in the U.S. Navy in Vietnam.

A retired family lawyer, Gruenberg sponsored the law that provides Silver Alerts to locate missing, vulnerable adults.

Another Gruenberg law requires the removal of asbestos from schools and public buildings.

Gruenberg served twice as the House majority leader. He was the minority whip in the current session.

Governor Bill Walker ordered that flags by lowered for both Gruenberg and U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Walker said Gruenberg’s death is a significant loss for all of Alaska.

Anchorage Democrats will submit three potential replacements to Walker, who will choose one. House Democrats will then accept or reject the choice.