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Delaware says its final goodbye to Gov. Ruth Ann Minner

Delaware’s top dignitaries, including President Joe Biden, pay their respects to former Governor Ruth Ann Minner Wednesday.

"Ruth Ann was without engaging in hyperbole one of Delaware's real true pioneers, one of the most remarkable and inspirational people I got to meet.," said President Biden.

Minner was remembered as a trailblazer, for not only being Delaware’s first and only woman governor, but also for her accomplishments in office.

Gov. John Carney, who served as Minner’s Lt. Governor, says her legacy is significant.

"Ruth Ann's presence still looms so large it's hard to believe that she's gone, but when I look around at an increasing number of women in elected office, cancer rates that continue to go down, and Delaware students able to afford college. And farmland preserved all over our state, and the list goes on," said Carney. "My mind goes right to Governor Ruth Ann Minner."

Carney adds that he and many in government would not be where they are today if not for Minner.

He also notes that while Minner was tough, she was a warm and kind person who always put family first.

Carney and Sen. Tom Carper told stories of Minner’s popularity in her home town of Milford, while also praising her record and road to becoming the first and only woman governor in Delaware.

Carney also spoke how Minner stood strong when the casino industry tried to fight her on the Clean Indoor Air Act, which made Delaware the second state to ban indoor smoking.

Carper and President Biden spoke about going to Minner for advice over the years.

Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester, who served in Minner’s cabinet, remembers her fondly.

"I call on Ruth Ann, I think about Ruth Ann and what she would have done in certain rooms. It's really about grace and grit. she did everything with this calmness, seemed very calm but with grit."

Minner served as governor from 2001-2009. She died last week at the age of 86.

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.