Sen. Jackie Winters dies amid lung cancer battle

(Portland Tribune photo)

SALEM – State Sen. Jackie Winters, a Salem Republican who spent decades in public service, has died.

The solemn news was delivered on the House floor by Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland, shortly after 2:30 p.m. Wednesday as lawmakers began receiving an email announcing her death. Several House members, including Rep. Denyc Boles, R-Salem, and Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon, D-Woodburn, broke into tears.

Representatives stood for a moment of silence to remember Winters, who was a force in the building, known for her progressive work on criminal justice reform as well as a uniter in the Senate Republican caucus.

Rep. Mark Meek, D-Clackamas County, sang “Amazing Grace” at the dais of the House Wednesday afternoon.

Winters, 82, was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2017. She last participated in . . .