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Heart Attack Claims Former Pennsylvania Rep. Blackwell

Former Rep. Lucien Blackwell, a Pennsylvania Democrat who served in the House for five years, died last week in his West Philadelphia home. He was 71.

Blackwell, who suffered a heart attack Jan. 24, served in the House from 1991 to 1995 and was appointed last year to incoming Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell’s (D) transition team.

The Whitsett, Pa., native, who helped coordinate Jesse Jackson’s 1988 presidential campaign, was a member of the Pennsylvania House from 1973 to 1975. Before that, he served in Army during the Korean War.

Blackwell served on the Philadelphia City Council from 1974 to 1991. He was also president of Local 1332 of the International Longshoremen’s Association from 1973 to 1991.

A former boxer, Blackwell won a special election in 1991 to fill a 2nd district vacancy with 39 percent of the vote. He served until losing the 1994 Democratic primary to Chaka Fattah, who has held that seat ever since.

He also served as a chairman for the Black Elected Officials and United Black Ward Leaders of Philadelphia.

Blackwell, who was head of a debt-collection company, is survived by his wife, Jannie.

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