Home / U.S. / The mayor of San Francisco, Ed Lee, dead at 65, is remembered as “good man with a good heart”

The mayor of San Francisco, Ed Lee, dead at 65, is remembered as “good man with a good heart”



Edwin M. Lee, the first Asian-American mayor of San Francisco, died suddenly early Tuesday morning. He was 65 years old.

The 43rd mayor of the city, Lee, died at 1:11 a.m. surrounded by relatives, friends and colleagues, according to a statement from the mayor's office. The cause of death was not disclosed immediately.

"Opponents may have disagreed with him about politics, but they all agree that our mayor was a good man with a good heart, he believed above all in building bridges and solving problems."

"Opponents may have disagreed with him about politics, but everyone agrees that our mayor was a good man with a good heart, he believed above all in building bridges and solving problems."

At a press conference on Tuesday, Dr. Susan Ehrlich, general director of Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, said Lee arrived by ambulance shortly after 10 p.m. on Monday in critical condition. The staff tried measures to save his life for several hours before he died, he said.

Ehrlich said that Lee's family, which includes his wife, Anita, and their two daughters, Brianna and Tania, had asked that no further medical information be shared. at this time.

The Reverend Norman Fong, executive director of the Chinatown Community Development Center (Chinatown CDC), told NBC News that he was among those gathered at the hospital. Fong said he led a closing prayer for the mayor, whom he had known since the late 1970s.

Everyone was crying.

"He had some difficult challenges, because working with a city like San Francisco is not easy." Fong said. "But he worked hard all the time, it's a great loss not only for the Chinese community, but for all of San Francisco, because he did some things."

Condolences went back to Lee, who was named mayor in January 2011 to end the term of Gavin Newsom, who resigned to become California's lieutenant governor. He was elected in November 2011 and again in 2015.

San Francisco Board of Supervisors chairman, London Breed, who is now acting mayor, said the flags on San Francisco will fly half a crew for 30 days. Multiple transit agencies in the San Francisco Bay area momentarily interrupted the service on Tuesday in his memory.

Lee was born in Seattle and was the son of working-class immigrants of Chinese descent who grew up in public housing, Breed said at a news conference. Tuesday. Lee's mother was a seamstress, her father a veteran who died while Lee was a teenager.

A photo of Mayor Ed Lee shown with flowers on the steps of City Hall in San Francisco on Tuesday, December 12, 2017. Jeff Chiu / AP

"They instilled in him humility and disinterest. that he maintained throughout his life, "said Breed, who added that, like Lee, she also grew up in public housing.

Lee graduated from Bowdoin College in 1974, which he attended with a scholarship, and from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1978, according to the website of the mayor's office and Breed.

Lee worked for the Asian Law Caucus of San Francisco, a legal and civil rights group now known as Asians. Advancing Justice-Caucus of Asian law, from 1976 to 1989, according to a statement by the nonprofit organization. He began as a paralegal and later became an administrative lawyer, advocating for affordable housing and workers' rights in the Bay Area.

The interim president and mayor of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, London Breed, speaks at a press conference at City Hall in San Francisco, Tuesday, December 12, 2017. Jeff Chiu / AP [19659021] During his tenure Lee started the Caucus Classic, a golf tournament to raise funds for the group. He extended that tradition after becoming mayor by leading the Mayor's Cup, a benefit to local non-profit organizations, according to Asian Law Caucus.

Aarti Kohli, executive director of the group, said they were all shocked and deeply saddened to learn of Lee's death. , adding that they are proud to call him a former student.

"Perhaps the greatest testament to his character lies in those cases in which Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus did not agree with City policy," Kohli said. "Despite the disagreement, the mayor's support for the ALC mission was unwavering."

After leaving the Asian Law Caucus, Lee became a complaint ordinance investigator, according to an online profile of the National Conference of Democratic Mayors.

assumed several other roles in San Francisco, including the executive director of the Human Rights Commission, director of public works and city manager.

Phil Chin, chairman of the board of the Chinatown Community Development Center, a defense group, called Lee a great partner for the past four decades.

"As Mayor, he also led the effort to turn the city's troubled public housing into a more sensitive and private non-profit organization, housing management and administration," Chin said in a statement. [19659030] According to the Mayor's Office, Lee established policies during his tenure that created more than 140,000 jobs, added more homes to the real estate market than any other mayor in San Francisco, and financed infrastructure, parks and schools at record levels .

U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, Democrat of California, former District Attorney of San Francisco and attorney general of California, said she was deeply saddened by the death of her friend.

"From his early days as a champion of fair housing, Ed was a tireless champion of San Francisco and a public servant who approached every challenge with modesty, courtesy and hard work," Harris said in a statement.

"From his early days as a defender of fair housing, Ed was a tireless champion of the Franciscans and a public servant who approached every challenge with modesty, civility and hard work."

"From his early days as a defender of fair housing, Ed was a tireless champion of the Franciscans and a public servant who approached every challenge with modesty, civility and hard work."

The chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Tom Perez, and the chairman of the Asia-Pacific caucus, Bel Leong-Hong, said that Lee was a man who dedicated his life to improving the lives of others and making San Francisco is stronger.

"He was a lifelong champion for affordable housing, and thanks to his fight to give workers the salary they deserve, San Francisco will go to a minimum wage of $ 15 next year," they said in a statement. [19659037] Rep. Judy Chu, Democrat of Calif., President of the Asian Pacific Caucus in the United States, said Lee will be deeply missed.

"Growing up as the son of immigrants and one of six children in public housing in Seattle, Ed faced economic difficulties and racial prejudice," Chu said in a statement. "As a lawyer, these experiences would continue to inspire her work, either helping the residents of a public housing project to organize themselves or defending women and people of color in the workforce."

But Lee also had his criticisms. [19659040SomewillnotbecausethemakeitsimportanttocreatequalifievablehousesandtheownershippricesofCaliforniatownareabout865000andthetechnologicalcompanysinitiatingalocalfiscaldeficitthroughtheirmotiontoencourageeconomicassistance

Others have had problems with Lee's unconditional support for San Francisco as a sanctuary city.

"Opponents may have disagreed with him about politics, but everyone agrees that our mayor was a good man with a good heart," Breed said. . "He believed above all in building bridges and solving problems."

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