Former state Rep. Carey dies at 88

 

DOVER — Former state Rep. V. George Carey, a Milford farmer who served 26 years in the state legislature, died Sunday. He was 88.

He is the second Milford-area legislator to die in the past 32 days, after retiring Rep. Harold “Jack” Peterman passed away Aug. 10 at age 74.

According to a release from the House Republican caucus, Mr. Carey died unexpectedly.

A Republican, he was first elected from the 36th Representative District in 1984. He retired in 2010.

V. George Carey

V. George Carey

“For the second time in recent weeks, I’ve said ‘goodbye’ to a friend and a confidant and the Milford area has lost a part of what makes it special,” 36th District Rep. Harvey Kenton, R-Milford, said in a statement. “George Carey was forthright, plain spoken and had a wisdom that was informed by a simple pragmatism. In short, he was the embodiment of Sussex County and our community is poorer for his passing.”

A career farmer and Milford native, Mr. Carey served on the Farm Bureau, Council of State Governments and National Conference of State Legislatures, advising policymakers on agriculture. In the General Assembly, he served on the Agriculture Committee for more than 20 years.

In 2009, shortly after announcing his forthcoming retirement, he said he still planned to continue working on his farm.

He helped create the Delaware Agricultural Lands Preservation Program in 1991 and played a role in approving the Delaware Veterans Home in Milford.

“He was always so full of life and could bring a smile to your face even on those days when you didn’t feel like smiling. His down-to-earth wit ticisms always left everyone with a hearty laugh, and his common-sense solutions to problems were usually right on the mark,” Senate Minority Leader F. Gary Simpson, R-Milford, said in a statement.

“He was one of the last full-time farmers to serve in the state capitol and agriculture lost one of its most ardent supporters when he decided to retire. Without hesitation, I enjoyed our years together in the legislature and my prayers are with (wife) Jeanette and the rest of his family as they grieve through their loss. Rest in peace my friend.”

Mr. Carey said in 2009 he first ran for office on the encouragement of friends.

A viewing will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Rogers Funeral Home in Milford.

The funeral will be held at the Slaughter Neck United Methodist Church in Argo Corners at 11 a.m. the next day.

Reach staff writer Matt Bittle at mbittle@newszap.com

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