December 09, 2003

A note from the Public Policy Institute

by Matt Baughman

Contact: Matt Baughman
618/453-4001 or 453-4009

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Former U.S. Sen. Paul Simon, founder and director of the Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, died today at 1:00 p.m. (CST) at the Prairie Heart Institute at St. John's Hospital in Springfield (Ill.) as a result of extensive bowel ischemia.

Mike Lawrence, associate director of the Institute, issued the following statement on behalf of the Institute staff: "All of us at the Institute were honored and privileged to work with this extraordinary human being and leader. We loved and respected him greatly and we will miss him very much. Without him the Institute will never be the same, but it will continue for decades and decades to come to pursue his unflagging commitment to a better world. We are deeply saddened by his loss and our hearts go out to his family."

Simon, 75, was surrounded by family members including his daughter Sheila Simon, son Martin Simon, wife Patti Simon and her daughter Jennie Derge.

The Prairie Heart Institute will hold a media availability today at 4:00 p.m. (CST) in its conference center, 619 E. Mason St., Springfield. Contact (217) 544-6464, ext. 44535 for more information on the availability.