ST. PAUL, Minn. - Rod Grams, a former Twin Cities anchorman who went on to serve as a Republican U.S. senator from Minnesota, has died at age 65.
Grams died at his home in the east-central Minnesota town of Crown late Tuesday night, Kent Kaiser, a longtime GOP activist and spokesman for the Grams family, said Wednesday. Grams had been diagnosed with cancer in April 2012. He entered hospice care about a month ago.
"Rod Grams was an ordinary Minnesotan who happened to become a senator," Kaiser told KARE 11. "He was very down to earth."
Grams was well-known to Twin Cities TV viewers after nearly a decade as lead news anchor for KMSP-TV. He launched his political career in 1992 with a successful run for Congress in Minnesota's 6th District.
Known as a lawmaker who reached across the aisle, Grams helped pass federal legislation that allows for a $500 per child tax credit.
After two years in the House, Grams won election to an open U.S. Senate seat. But six years later he lost the seat to Democrat Mark Dayton.
(Copyright 2013 KARE and The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)