Businessman, minister and former state Sen. Thomas M. Ward died early Thursday at his Lexington home following an illness. He was 77.
Mr. Ward represented the 30th District from 1973 to 1977, according to an obituary submitted to the Herald-Leader. At the time, the 30th District covered Anderson, Franklin and Woodford counties, as well as part of Fayette County.
Mr. Ward moved to Kentucky from his home state of Louisiana to attend Louisville Baptist Theological Seminary, from which he received a Master's of Divinity in 1962. He served as an assistant pastor at Calvin Presbyterian Church in Louisville; founded John Knox Presbyterian Church in Louisville; and served as minister of Pisgah Church in Versailles from 1965 to 1969.
He became politically active about that time and was chosen as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in Chicago in 1968. After an unsuccessful bid for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, he was elected to the Kentucky Senate, where he served on the Education Committee and led efforts to help preserve Red River Gorge.
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Mr. Ward was also a part-time instructor at Midway College and the University of Kentucky. After his time as a legislator and educator, he entered the business world, co-founding a number of companies. He was most recently employed as an executive with EnviRes and Advanced Carbon Products.
Mr. Ward is survived by his wife, Lee Sturtevant; sons, Morgan Ward and Taylor Ward; daughters, Louise Meyer and Peggy Dickinson; and eight grandchildren.
Visitation will be from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at Kerr Brothers Funeral Home, 463 East Main Street, Lexington. Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at Pisgah Presbyterian Church, 710 Pisgah Road, Versailles.