Longest-serving congressman in US history dead at 92

John Dingell, a Michigan Democrat, served a record 59 consecutive years in the US House of Representatives.

David Rosenberg ,

John Dingell
John Dingell

America’s longest-serving congressman passed away Thursday, following a nearly six-decade career in the House of Representatives.

John David Dingell Jr., a Democrat who represented Michigan in the US House of Representatives for a record 59 years, died at the age of 92 Thursday, and is survived by his wife, Debbie, and the couple’s four children. He had been earlier diagnosed with prostate cancer.

“He was a lion of the United States Congress and a loving son, father, husband, grandfather, and friend,” Dingell’s wife Debbie said in a statement to the press.

“He will be remembered for his decades of public service to the people of Southeast Michigan, his razor sharp wit, and a lifetime of dedication to improving the lives of all who walk this earth.”

Dingell, who represented Michigan’s 12th, 15th, and 16th districts as western Detroit suburbs like Dearborn an Ann Arbor we redistricted, first entered Congress in 1955, winning his father’s seat in a special election following his father’s death. John Dingell Sr. had held the seat for 22 years prior to his son’s special election victory.

During his nearly six-decade political career, Dingell remained popular with constituents, winning reelection by double digit margins every two years.

In 2014, Dingell announced that he would be retiring from politics. The seat, however, would remain in the family, with Dingell’s wife, Debbie winning that November’s midterm election and winning reelection in 2016 and 2018. Accounting for redistricting, the seat has remained in the Dingell family for some 86 years.