Former Illinois Congressman Lane Evans, who served 24 years in Congress until being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2006, has died. He was 63. A congressman who served with Evans for 10 years remembers him fondly. “I think his legacy is the work he did with veterans,” former U.S. Rep. Ray LaHood says of the Vietnam-era Marine. “He adopted the veterans in his district as an opportunity to see that they received the very best services, medical and otherwise.”
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LaHood, also a former U.S. secretary of transportation, first got to know Evans in 1982, when Evans succeeded LaHood's then-boss, U.S. Rep. Tom Railsback, in Washington. The current representative from that area, U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-East Moline), is quoted in a statement from her office: "Lane represented everything that is right about public service. He was a champion for our region in the halls of Congress and a strong advocate for veterans and working families across the country. Lane will be sorely missed by all who he touched but his legacy of service will never be forgotten." LaHood remembered Evans, of Rock Island, as “a proud Democrat” and a progressive.