Funeral services are now set for former North Carolina U.S. Senator Jesse Helms.
A viewing for Helms will be held from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, July 7, at Hayes-Barton Baptist Church, 1800 Glenwood Ave., Raleigh.
A funeral will be held at the church on Tuesday, July 8, at 2 p.m. A private burial for family will follow.
The Jesse Helms center said the former senator died at 1:15 a.m. on the Fourth of July.
Jimmy Broughton, Helms' former chief of staff, says the former senator died of natural causes in Raleigh.
Helms built a career along the fault lines of racial politics and battled liberals, Communists and the occasional fellow Republican during his decades in Congress. He was slowed in later age by a variety of illnesses, including a bone disorder, prostate cancer and heart problems.
Helms served in the Senate from 1972 through 2002, and before that did commentaries for a Raleigh television station.
Helms sat down for an interview with WITN-TV in 1987, to talk about the issues facing our country. That interview was conducted by then WITN anchor David Crabtree, who is now an anchor at WRAL. Click on the Helms Interview video above to watch.
“Bob and I are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our longtime friend Senator Jesse Helms. We extend our heartfelt sympathies to his precious wife Dot and their family.
“In succeeding Jesse to represent North Carolina in the United States Senate, I knew I could never replace him, but I continue to strive each day to provide the dedicated constituent service he provided the people of our state for 30 years. As my father would say, Jesse was indeed a ‘watchdog’ for North Carolina and for the nation.”
"Brooke and I are extremely saddened to hear the news of the passing of Jesse Helms. Jesse was a mentor and good friend and his contributions to North Carolina and to the nation were countless. We will miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Dot and the entire Helms family."
“Whether you liked his politics or not, he was a national force able to deliver for his constituents. We last appeared together when the Navy named a submarine after North Carolina at his request. He certainly didn’t shy from controversy and you always knew what his positions were. Whether we were working together to stop international drug trafficking or opposing each other on the campaign trail, he was always a gentleman to me.”