Rep. Brian Higgins has announced the death of former longtime Erie County Legislator Mike Fitzpatrick.
Like Higgins, Fitzpatrick was from South Buffalo and represented the 2nd legislative district 1977-2001.
"Mike Fitzpatrick was a legendary figure in Buffalo and national labor, civic, and political circles," Higgins said in a statement. "Both as a longtime county legislator and as a leader with the Ironworkers union, Mike influenced development in Buffalo for more than a generation and left fingerprints on dozens of downtown projects that served as building blocks for what we see today. A beloved son of South Buffalo, Mike was always true to his neighborhood roots and leaves behind a legacy of accomplishments that few will equal."
Fitzpatrick was the son of a policeman, the nephew of a First Ward Democratic chairman and a graduate of Bishop Timon High School. He retired from politics after a fourth drunk driving arrest in five years.
Cause of death and memorial services were not mentioned in Higgins' announcement. Fitzpatrick was 72 years old.