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Friday April 20, 2001

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State Sen. Nichols collapses in office, dies

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State Sen. Andy Nichols, a veteran lawmaker from Tucson who is a leading supporter of public health programs, died yesterday evening after collapsing in his office. He was 64.

Nichols, a University of Arizona faculty member and administrator, had finished a telephone conversation in his third-floor Senate office about 6 p.m. when he put his head down on his desk and then collapsed on the floor, a witness said.

University medical student Pat Sciara said he and another person administered CPR before Phoenix Fire Department paramedics arrived.

Sciara said he was in Phoenix for a lecture and was in Nichols' office to discuss that when the senator collapsed.

"I thought he passed out," Sciara said.

The last Arizona legislator to die in office was Rep. Elise Salinger, D-Phoenix, in 1999. She was found dead in her home of natural causes.

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