West News Wire: Ben Stevens, a former president of the Alaska Senate and the late Sen. Ted Stevens’ son, has passed away. He was 63.

According to the Alaska State Troopers, they responded to a complaint of a hiker having a medical problem on the Lost Lake Trail close to Seward on Thursday night. The hiker was later recognized as Stevens, according to the troopers. According to the troopers’ statement, a medical crew arrived on the site around 6:40 p.m. and tried to save the victim’s life, but they were unsuccessful.

In a statement released on Friday, Erec Isaacson, president of ConocoPhillips Alaska, said the business was “deeply grieved by the tragic demise of our friend and colleague, Ben Stevens,” who served as vice president of external affairs and transportation there.

Stevens joined the company in early 2021 after working as chief of staff to Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy.

“I will always cherish the time he was my Chief of Staff; his knowledge and political acumen were significant assets in my administration,” Dunleavy said on social media.

A message seeking comment was sent to the Ted Stevens Foundation. Ted Stevens, who died in 2010, was a Republican U.S. senator for Alaska for 40 years.

Ben Stevens, a Republican, was appointed to the state Senate in 2001. He was Senate president in 2005 and 2006 but did not seek reelection after that.

His office was among at least six state legislative offices raided by federal agents in 2006 as part of a corruption probe. Stevens was never charged with a crime. He denied any wrongdoing.

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Former Alaska Gov. Bill Walker, an independent, on social media said he had spent time twice this week with Stevens and that the news of his unexpected death was “surreal.”

Members of Alaska’s congressional delegation called Stevens a friend. U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola, a Democrat whose time in the state Legislature overlapped with Stevens’, said Alaska has lost a “great leader who worked tirelessly for our entire state.”

State Senate President Peter Micciche, a Republican, said “politics and a fierce commitment to serving Alaska was in Ben’s blood.”

Stevens is survived by his wife, Elizabeth, and their children.


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