Christopher Mega, former state senator, dies at age 80

State Supreme Court Justice and former State Senator ChristopherMega died on Sunday morning, October 30, at the age of 80.

Mega served as a New York State assemblymember for the 50thAssembly District in the 1970s and represented Bay Ridge, DykerHeights and Sunset Park for several terms as a state senatorbetween 1979 and 1993. In 1995, he was appointed by then-GovernorGeorge Pataki as chief judge of the State Court of Claims, a panelthat hears lawsuits filed against the state.

A revered local activist in his own neighborhood of Bay Ridge,Mega served in numerous community groups like the Dyker HeightsCivic Association and the Bay Ridge Lions Club. But it was hiseffort to bring the first pre-K programs to Community SchoolDistrict 20 that was one of his crowning achievements, according toBorough President Marty Markowitz.

While serving in Albany and from the bench, Chris always foundtime to give back to his beloved Brooklyn-as a visionary in earlychildhood education, Markowitz said. I hope [his family] will becomforted by the thoughts and prayers of millions of Brooklynitesand New Yorkers grateful for his outstanding service.

Although Democratic Councilmember Vincent Gentile sat on theother side of the aisle from Mega, he expressed deep mourning.

A true gladiator has left us, said Gentile, who was thesitting state senator in 1998, when he defeated Mega in thelatter’s race to reclaim his seat. Even though Chris and I hadsome epic political battles, he set the standard for the modern dayelected official. His hard-working, omnipresent approach wassomething which we all admired and still strive to achieve.

Current State Senator Marty Golden also mourned Mega’sdeath.

I was very saddened to hear of the passing of my friend andpredecessor, Chris Mega, Golden said. Chris served our communityand the people of the State of New York with great distinction. Forover 40 years, Chris dedicated himself to giving back as both alegislator and a jurist.

Mega is survived by his wife, Madelyn, and their children andgrandchildren. A wake will be held at Clavin Funeral Home on FourthAvenue and 78th Street on Thursday and Friday. A funeral mass willbe held on Saturday.

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