Phyllis Pond (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — The longest-serving female state representative in Indiana's history has died after 35 years in office.
The Indiana House speaker's office announced the death of Republican Rep. Phyllis Pond of New Haven. The 82-year-old Pond had three weeks ago announced her decision to resign effective Oct. 15 after being recently diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis
Pond was a retired kindergarten teacher first elected to her Fort Wayne-area district in 1978. Her legislative work included pushing measures that reduced class sizes throughout the state and helped minority students attend law school.
House Speaker Brian Bosma says Pond forged a new path for women legislators in Indiana and that her dedication and service will be fondly remembered.
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