Mourning the death of Edward I. Koch, former New York City Mayor

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LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION mourning the death of Edward I. Koch, former New
York City Mayor and esteemed public leader

WHEREAS, This Legislative Body, proudly representing the people of the
State of New York, is moved to pause this day to recognize and pay trib-
ute to the life and distinguished service of Edward I. Koch, the 105th
Mayor of the great City of New York; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch, who served three terms as Mayor of the City
of New York, from January 1, 1978 until December 31, 1989, died on
Friday, February 1, 2013, at the age of 88; and
WHEREAS, This remarkable public leader and staunch supporter of Israel
was well-known and admired for his whirlwind life as a television judge,
radio talk-show host, author, law partner, newspaper columnist, movie
reviewer, professor, commercial pitchman and politician; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch was a visionary who used his political acumen
to bring his dreams to fruition and to blaze a trail wide enough for a
generation of New Yorkers to follow; and
WHEREAS, The son of Jewish immigrants, Louis and Joyce Silpe Koch,
Edward I. Koch was born in Crotona Park East in the Bronx, New York
City, on December 12, 1924; he left college to serve his country as a
member of the United States Army during World War II, earning two battle
stars in Europe as an infantryman and was discharged in 1946, as a
sergeant; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch returned to the City College of New York, and
earned a bachelor's degree in 1981; he went on to receive his law degree
in 1948, from New York University and was admitted to the New York State
bar the following year; over the next 20 years, he practiced law in New
York City, becoming a founding partner of Koch, Lankenau, Schwartz &
Kovner in 1963; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch was elected to the City Council in 1967, serv-
ing for two years prior to his election to the United States Congress in
1969, representing the East Side of Manhattan with distinction for
years; and
WHEREAS, An irrepressible icon, his 12-year mayoralty encompassed the
fiscal austerity of the late 1970s and many other complex issues; and
WHEREAS, Mayor Edward I. Koch is credited with leading the New York
City government back from near bankruptcy in the 1970s to prosperity in
the 1980s; he also began one of the City's most ambitious housing
programs, which continued after he left office and eventually built or
rehabilitated more than 200,000 housing units, revitalizing several
neighborhoods; and
WHEREAS, As Mayor, Edward I. Koch held down spending, restoring the
City's creditworthiness, and began the restoration of much of the City's
infrastructure, including its bridges and streets; and
WHEREAS, Re-elected in 1981, Mayor Edward I. Koch markedly improved
the City's finances during his second term in office; he hired workers
back and restored many municipal services; in addition, he made plans
for major housing programs, improvements in education and efforts to
reduce welfare dependency; and
WHEREAS, In 1985, Edward I. Koch was elected to a third term as Mayor
of the City of New York, during which his efforts enabled the City to
get back into the bond markets, paving the road to recovery; the housing
plan, based on dozens of city financing and ownership programs, became a
notable and long-lasting success; and
WHEREAS, By the end of the Koch administration, 3,000 apartments had
been created in formerly vacant buildings, 13,000 more were under
construction, and design work had begun on 20,000 more; and

WHEREAS, After leaving office, Edward I. Koch presented forums on
television and radio; he also authored numerous newspaper articles for
THE POST and THE DAILY NEWS, and magazine articles for such periodicals
as the JEWISH WORLD REVIEW, as well as books; and
WHEREAS, He became an adjunct professor at New York University, Bran-
deis University and Baruch College of the City University of New York,
and gave lectures across the country; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch made regular appearances on WCBS-TV, had talk
shows on Fox television and on WNEW and WABC radio, teamed with former
Senator Alfonse M. D'Amato for a Bloomberg Radio program, and was a
frequent commentator on the local news television station NY1; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch appeared, mostly as himself, in a score of
movies, including "The Muppets Take Manhattan" and "The First Wives
Club," and in cameo roles on television shows, including "Sex and the
City"; he also made commercials for Coca-Cola, Snapple, FreshDirect and
Ultra Slim-Fast; and
WHEREAS, Furthermore, he was the star of "Koch," the documentary film
by Neil Barsky that had its premiere at the Museum of Modern Art; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch became a partner in Robinson, Silverman,
Pearce, Aronsohn & Berman, which in a 2002 merger, became Bryan Cave, an
international law firm and one of the largest real estate practices in
New York; and
WHEREAS, From 1997 to 1999, he was the judge on the nationally syndi-
cated show "The People's Court"; and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch continued to write books, a total of 17,
including murder mysteries and commentaries on politics, rivals and
other subjects; most were a blend of his insights, experiences and
observations with co-authors providing the workaday prose; while in
office, he produced MAYOR (1984), POLITICS (1985) and HIS EMINENCE AND
HIZZONER (1989); and
WHEREAS, Edward I. Koch and his sister wrote a small volume, EDDIE:
HAROLD'S LITTLE BROTHER, a children's book that appeared in 2004; and
WHEREAS, Predeceased by his brother, Harold M. Koch, Edward I. Koch is
survived by his sister, Pat Koch Thaler, a former dean at New York
University; and
WHEREAS, Rare indeed is the impressive conviction, dedication and
commitment shown by an individual for the benefit of his community and
fellow man, such as that which has been demonstrated by Edward I. Koch
throughout his purposeful life and distinguished career; his colorful
character, his bold spirit, and his sharp wit will be missed by many;
now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
mourn the death of Edward I. Koch, former New York City Mayor and
esteemed public leader; and be it further
RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be tran-
smitted to Pat Koch Thaler.


  • 01 / Feb / 2013
  • 05 / Feb / 2013
  • 05 / Feb / 2013

Resolution Details

Law Section:
Resolutions, Legislative


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