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'I Owe Everything I Have To Him' Says Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick As State Leaders Mark Passing Of Rush Limbaugh

(CBSDFW.COM) - Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is among conservative Texas leaders mourning the passing of conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday, Feb. 17.

Limbaugh died of complications from lung cancer at the age of 70.

"I mourn the loss of my friend of 33 years, Rush Limbaugh," Lt. Gov. Patrick said in a statement. "We started out together in 1988, he with a new radio show, and me with a new radio station. He was the greatest talk radio host in history and built the conservative movement in America. I owe everything I have to him. I wouldn't be Lt. Governor today without his help in building an audience for my station and my own show. There will never be another Rush. He was an original and a great and loyal friend."

Former President George W. Bush, who makes his home in Dallas also released a statement on Limbaugh's passing:

"Laura and I are sorry to learn that Rush Limbaugh has passed away. A son of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Rush rose as a pioneer of talk radio starting in the 1980s, and was a friend throughout my Presidency. While he was brash, at times controversial, and always opinionated, he spoke his mind as a voice for millions of Americans and approached each day with gusto. As he battled hearing loss and cancer late in life, he was sustained by the support of friends and family, his love of sports and rock and roll, and his belief in God and country. Rush Limbaugh was an indomitable spirit with a big heart, and he will be missed."

Limbaugh broke the news of his stage 4 lung cancer diagnosis in February 2020.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) issued the following statement:

"Today, Americans' hearts are heavy as we bid farewell to Rush Limbaugh. Rush was a patriot and a lion-hearted defender of freedom. He was a conservative leader and media icon who forged a path in radio that had not been tread before, giving a voice to millions of conservatives who listened to his show every day for three decades. Ronald Reagan once called Rush the 'Number One voice for conservatism in our country,' and Rush truly was.

"Rush not only created one of the biggest outlets for freedom and conservatism that existed in the 20th century, his distinctive style, voice, and sayings have had a lasting impact on American culture in the last 30 years – including the coining of the phrase 'Dittohead' to describe his listeners. There is no doubt that Rush will continue to live on as one of the most iconic figures in the conservative movement for years to come.

"A little over a decade ago, Rush gave a famous speech at CPAC where he articulated so beautifully what conservatives believe about America:

'We want every American to be the best he or she chooses to be. We recognize that we are all individuals. We love and revere our founding documents, the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. We believe that the preamble to the Constitution contains an inarguable truth that we are all endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights, among them life, liberty, Freedom and the pursuit of happiness.'

"Ditto, Rush.

"Not only will Rush be remembered as a good and faithful servant to his country, he will be remembered as a good and faithful servant to God. When diagnosed with terminal lung cancer last year, Rush told his staff that he had a 'deeply personal relationship with God' and that he had been 'working that relationship tremendously.' Today, Rush rests with the Lord, having fought the good fight, finished the race, and kept the faith. Heidi and I were crushed to learn that Rush's courageous fight with lung cancer has ended, and we send our heartfelt prayers and condolences to Rush's wife Kathryn and all of his loved ones as they grieve this heartbreaking loss.

"Rush, thank you for standing for freedom, for America, and for conservative principles. You will be greatly missed. May you rest in peace, my friend."

Tyler Cox, former Program Director & Operations Manager for WBAP and KLIF in Dallas, told CBS 11, "Today is a very sad day. It's not like we didn't anticipate this coming. We've known about his illness for a little over a year now... Rush leaves gigantic void in the radio landscape... Back when he started doing the network show in the in the late 80s, it reinvented AM radio... He is the guy who is responsible for saving AM radio station operators all across the country. Not enough credit's given to him for that."

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