DALLAS (AP) — Former Texas first lady Rita Crocker Clements has died at age 86.
A son-in-law, Jim Moroney, says Clements died Saturday at her Dallas home. Moroney, who’s publisher of The Dallas Morning News and CEO of the A.H. Belo Corporation, said Sunday that his mother-in-law died of complications due to Alzheimer’s disease.
Clements was a key adviser to her husband, Bill Clements, an oilman and the first Republican governor of Texas since Reconstruction. He served two terms from 1979-January 1983, and 1987-January 1991.
Rita Clements in 1953 earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin. She later became a University of Texas System regent.
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The ex-first lady was known for her efforts to preserve the state’s heritage and renovation of the Governor’s Mansion.
Bill Clements died in 2011.