YOUNG HARRIS, GA (WFXG) - Former Georgia Governor and U.S. Senator Zell Miller passed away peacefully at his home with family by his side. The longtime politician was being treated for Parkinson's Disease. He was 86 years old.
The announcement was made by the his grandson, Bryan Miller, CEO of the Miller Institute Foundation today. He said, "My grandfather passed away peacefully surrounded by his family," said Miller. "The people of Georgia have lost one of our state's finest public servants."
The family is not receiving visitors and asks for privacy as they mourn this tremendous loss. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Miller Institute Foundation in memory of Zell Miller. Funeral arrangements will be announced soon.
Zell Miller served as Mayor of Young Harris from 1959-1960. He served as a Georgia State Senator from 1961-1964. He served as Lieutenant Governor of Georgia for 16 years from 1975-1991. He is currently the longest serving Lieutenant Governor in Georgia history.
Zell Miller served as the 79th Governor of Georgia from 1991-1999. As Governor, he created the HOPE (Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally) Scholarship and Georgia's Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten Program. He went on to serve in the U.S. Senate from 2000-2005.
Today, more than 1.8 million students have gone to college in Georgia on HOPE Scholarships and more than 1.6 million four-year olds have begun their education through Georgia's Pre-K Program. These were his proudest achievements in his 46-year career in public service.