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Ambassador Harriman Dies At 76

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PARIS (AllPolitics, Feb. 5) -- U.S. Ambassador to France Pamela Harriman died today following a severe cerebral hemorrhage earlier this week, an aide said.

"It is with sadness that we announce the death of Ambassador Harriman," said Donald Bandler, the deputy chief of mission, reading a statement. An embassy spokesman said Harriman died at 3:48 p.m. Paris time (9:48 a.m. EST).

Harriman, 76, collapsed Monday night while swimming at a health club at the Ritz Hotel. She had remained in intensive care in serious condition since that time. Members of her family, including her son Winston Churchill, were at her side when she died.

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"She was an extraordinary United States ambassador," said President Bill Clinton this morning, after speaking with Harriman's son. "She was one of the most unusual and gifted people I ever met."

Harriman had been the U.S. ambassador since 1993, spoke fluent French, and was extremely popular in France. She was a longtime patron of Clinton's going back to his days as Arkansas governor, and has raised millions of dollars for the Democratic Party.

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"She was a source of judgment and inspiration to me, a source of constant good humor and charm and real friendship," the president added this morning before leaving for an education speech in Georgia. "We will miss her very, very much."

Harriman's body will be flown to United States for burial next to her late husband Avril Harriman.


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