Ed Koch, 1924-2013
You loved him. You hated him.
You sometimes felt both of those feelings at the same time towards the man.
Politicos remembered former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, 88, who died Friday from congestive heart failure, and reached out to share their memories across social media platforms.
The former three-term mayor was largely responsible for saving the city from financial peril during his tenure from 1979 until 1989.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg ordered that all flags on New York City’s buildings be flown at half-staff and called Koch the city’s “most charismatic cheerleader and champion.”
“Earlier today, New York City lost an irrepressible icon, our most charismatic cheerleader and champion, Edward I. Koch. He was a great mayor, a great man, and a great friend,” Bloomberg said in a public statement. “In elected office and as a private citizen, he was our most tireless, fearless, and guileless civic crusader.”
Bloomberg continued: “Through his tough, determined leadership and responsible fiscal stewardship, Ed helped lift the city out of its darkest days and set it on course for an incredible comeback. We will miss him dearly, but his good works – and his wit and wisdom – will forever be a part of the city he loved so much.”
Bloomberg said that he wasn’t just speaking on behalf of himself but for all New Yorkers in saying that Koch will be deeply missed.
“His spirit will live on not only here at City Hall, and not only on the bridge the bears his name, but all across the five boroughs. I’m expressing my condolences on behalf of all 8.4 million New Yorkers, and I know so many of them will be keeping Mayor Koch and his family and friends in their thoughts prayers,” Bloomberg said in the statement.
Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) echoed Bloomberg’s sentiments, calling Koch a “true friend and trusted advisor.”
Koch was many things, even at one time serving as the replacement judge on “The People’s Court” for a few years. Mostly though, he always came off to me as the conscience of New York City.
He was a social liberal, a hardline conservative against crime, and a tough line on fiscal matters. It is possible to say that without Koch there would be no Rudy Giuliani.
Rest in Peace.