Colleagues reflect on the life, legacy of former Sen. Carl Levin

‘May God bless a great American, a dear friend and a good man’

Michigan’s longest serving U.S. Senator, Carl Levin, died Thursday night at the age of 87.
Michigan’s longest serving U.S. Senator, Carl Levin, died Thursday night at the age of 87.

DETROIT – Michigan’s longest serving U.S. senator, Carl Levin, died Thursday night at the age of 87.

Read: Former Sen. Carl Levin, Michigan’s longest serving senator, dies at 87

His family held a private funeral Friday for Levin at Ira Kaufman Funeral Home in Southfield. A larger public service is expected to be announced.

Levin served six terms, the longest run out of any Michigan senator. He served along the nation’s longest serving senator, John Dingell.

Rep. Debbie Dingell, who succeeded John, said she and John were part of the Levin family and that Michigan lost a giant.

“He was famous for his rumpled suit. He didn’t care what he looked like -- neither did John for that matter,” Dingell recalled. “His glasses at the end of his nose, but he was one of the smartest men I knew. The most prepared, he knew every detail and that’s how he could hold people accountable.”

Levin served as chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Investigations. The man who succeeded Levin was Sen. Gary Peters, who said the Wayne State University Levin Center is dedicated to the kind of public service Levin did.

“Government officials and folks in the Senate have an obligation to speak truth to power and that’s what Carl always did,” Peters said. “He was speaking truth to power, always armed with facts and knew what he was talking about and not afraid to push aggressively.”

Dingell said Levin’s fingerprints are on so much across Michigan.

“From the Riverfront to buildings in Detroit, to the Defense Center, to Warren, to the Great Lakes -- you know national wildlife refuge, important environmental things, Carl Levin did so many things and what he did will be there for generations to come,” Dingell said.

President Joe Biden released the following statement about his friend:

More reactions on Levin’s passing can be read here.


About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.