Grandmother who starred in popular Kentucky campaign ad dies

jbrammer@herald-leader.comJune 21, 2012 

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, left, said her grandmother Thelma Lundergan McHugh "instilled in me the confidence that I could accomplish anything."


Thelma Lundergan McHugh, the paternal grandmother of Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes who starred in a popular campaign ad for Grimes last year, died Thursday at her home in Jessamine County. She was 92.

"My grandmother instilled in me the confidence that I could accomplish anything I put my mind to and taught me by example the importance of being involved in my community," Grimes said in a statement.

Mrs. McHugh filmed commercials and encouraged citizens to vote in the 2011 election with Grimes' maternal grandmother, Elsie Case, of Maysville. Some political observers said their ad was the best of the campaign season.

Grimes said her paternal grandmother worked in the Mason County sheriff's office for more than 20 years and "stood by my side from the moment I filed to run for public office through my swearing-in and first six months as secretary of state.

"I would not be where I am today without her love, influence and support."

In addition to Grimes, Mrs. McHugh is survived by five children, 14 other grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, a sister, two brothers and a stepson.

Visitation will be at 4 p.m. Sunday at Betts and West Funeral Home, Nicholasville, and 5 p.m. Monday at Bell & Son Funeral Home, Maysville.

Services will be at 10 a.m. Monday at St. Luke's Catholic Church, Nicholasville, and 11 a.m. Tuesday at St. Patrick's Cemetery in Washington, Ky.

Jack Brammer: (502) 227-1198. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog:

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