Former U.S. Sen. Adlai Stevenson III, a member of the influential Illinois political family, has died at his home on Chicago's North Side. He was 90.
His son Adlai Stevenson IV, who confirmed the Illinois Democrat’s death, said his father had dementia, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
Before his health declined, Stevenson kept active organizing presentations and speakers for the Adlai Stevenson Center on Democracy in Libertyville. He also worked on the family farm in Hanover, raising cattle, growing corn and hay for their feed, and chopping wood.
“He just faded away,” his son said.
Stevenson's great-grandfather Adlai E. Stevenson I was raised in Bloomington and whose political career eventually led to becoming vice president of the United States. Adlai Stevenson II was ambassador to the United Nations, governor of Illinois and two-time presidential candidate. Both are buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Bloomington.
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., in a statement said: “Adlai was my friend and partner in countless causes over the years. Like his father before him, Adlai was most at home in the cerebral world of politics. His most effective ally in retail politics was his beloved wife, Nancy. The two were inseparable and one of the best teams in Illinois Democratic politics. Loretta and I send our love and sympathy to Nancy and the family.”
Marine Corps veteran of the Korean War and Harvard University graduate, Adlai Stevenson III ran for governor of Illinois twice, losing his 1982 run by just 5,074 votes to Republican Gov. Jim Thompson. It is the closest Illinois election for governor in modern state history.
When running for the Senate, he asked then-Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley for advice.
“My advice to you is don’t change your name,” Daley told him, the newspaper reported.
He spoke at the McLean County Museum of History in 2010 about his book, "The Black Book: Lessons from American History, Abraham Lincoln to Modern China."
"This was in an era of service, and patriotism wasn't just something that you would only wear on your lapel but something that was cultivated through a lifetime," he said. "We must recall America's values, and to face our past to succeed in the future."
FROM THE ARCHIVES: Adlai Stevenson II on the national stage
London Manuel Perez Guerrero and Adlai E. Stevenson
Five hundred representative of 51 nations met at Church House, Westminster, London, as a preparatory commission of the United Nations organization to prepare for the great assembly of the UNO which will be convened at the Central Hall, Westminster, London. From left to right are: Dr. Manuel Perez Guerrero of Venezuela and the Adlai E. Stevenson, U.S.A. at the opening session of the Commission, in London, on Nov. 24, 1945.
Inspecting Illinois National Guardsmen
Illinois Gov. Adlai E. Stevenson II (on the right in a suit) inspects Illinois National Guardsmen in May 1952 at Camp Cooke, California. These men were with the 144th Antiaircraft Artillery Automatic Weapons Battalion, a Bloomington-based National Guard unit “federalized” during the Korean War. Camp Cooke is now Vandenberg Air Force Base.
Adlai Stevenson, John Sparkman 1952
Gov. Adlai E. Stevenson (left) and Sen. John Sparkman each make the “V” sign from rostrum in Chicago, July 26, 1952 as they faced the Democratic convention which nominated them as they party candidates for president and vice president respectively.
Gov. Adlai Stevenson, center, poses with police captains Harry Penzin, left, and Robert Ryan as he leaves the Democratic National Convention in Chicago, Ill., after accepting the presidential nomination, July 26, 1952.
Adlai Stevenson shoe
Adlai Stevenson, Democratic Presidential nominee, bares a worn sole to his rally audience in Flint, Michigan on Sept. 1, 1952. Bill Gallagher's photo of the hole in Adlai Stevenson's shoe became a trademark for his campaign. The photo won Gallagher the Pulitzer Prize in 1953.
Movie Actress Piper Laurie, left, wears a donkey head beauty spot on her cheek as she chats with Gov. Adlai Stevenson of Illinois, Democratic presidential nominee in Portland, Sept. 8, 1952. She was here for the city's fall opening. Stevenson was here to open his campaign for West Coast votes at Portland.
Harry Truman, Adlai Stevenson
President Harry S. Truman and Adlai Stevenson begin serious talks at the White House in Washington on Dec. 4, 1952, aimed at planning a comeback trail for the Democrats after the November defeat at the polls. Stevenson, Illinois governor and losing presidential nominee, arrived on Dec. 3 for the talks and a dinner to be given on December 4 by the president and Mrs. Truman.
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Adlai Stevenson
Adlai E. Stevenson and President Dwight Eisenhower shake hands at the White House in Washington, Feb. 17, 1953, when Stevenson lunched with Eisenhower and a group of congressmen. A few months before, Eisenhower had defeated Stevenson in the presidential election.
Queen Mother Elizabeth
Britain’s Queen Mother Elizabeth enjoys a chat with Adlai Stevenson, left, presidential candidate in 1952, and Dr. Grayson Kirk, second from left, president of Columbia University, in Exhibition Hall at Columbia University in New York City on Oct. 31, 1954 before receiving honorary Doctor of Laws degree in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, adjacent to the campus. To the right of the Queen Mother are West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and Chief Justice of the United States Earl Warren, extreme right, who, with Queen Mother and Stevenson, received honorary degrees in third and final convocation of university’s year-long 200th anniversary celebration.
Richard Rodgers, Adlai Stevenson
Gov. Adlai Stevenson, right, wears a big grin as he discusses a drawing with Composer Richard Rodgers in the governor’s suite at the Hotel Biltmore in New York City on Sept. 22, 1952. According to Hermon D. Smith, chairman of the National Volunteers for Stevenson, Rodgers will work actively for the election of Stevenson. Cartoon was drawn by Bill Mauldin.
Adlai Stevenson campaigning
Adlai E. Stevenson, “in the swim” of a campaign with Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-Tenn.) for Florida’s 28 Democratic convention votes for president, shakes hands with swimmer before concession stands on the beach boardwalk in Jacksonville Beach, Florida on May 23, 1956.
Stevenson nominated 1956
Arm upraised, Adlai Stevenson appears before the Democratic National Convention after the party made him its presidential nominee in Chicago, Illinois on August 16, 1956. In a short talk he left the choice of the vice presidential running mate to the convention. The convention delegates voted on August 17, Estes Kefauver as the vice presidential nominee.
Lauren Bacall, Adlai Stevenson
Lauren Bacall, leading lady of the new play "Goodbye Charlie" is pictured with Adlai Stevenson, one of the well-wishers on the receiving line backstage after her performance on Broadway in New York, Dec. 16, 1959.
JFK, Adlai Stevenson, Lyndon B. Johnson 1960
The candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination were in a happy mood as they posed at a giant reception held for delegates to the convention in Beverly Hills on July 10, 1960. From Left to right are Sen. John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts, front runner for the nomination; Adlai Stevenson, and Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas.
JFK, Adlai Stevenson
Democratic candidate for president Senator John F. Kennedy, D-Mass., shakes hands with former Democratic nominee Adlai Stevenson at a reception held for delegates to the Democratic National Convention, in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Calif., July 10, 1960.
John Kennedy, Adlai Stevenson
Sen. John F. Kennedy, left, and Adlai E. Stevenson, former governor of Illinois give with a big smile from the back porch of the Democratic nominees Hyannis Port home on July 31, 1960 in Hyannis Port, MA. Kennedy and Stevenson discuss plans for his forth coming campaign.
John Kennedy, Adlai Stevenson
Adlai Stevenson, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, reports to President John Kennedy on his recent trip to Europe. They talk in the president's White House office on August 3, 1961 in Washington. Stevenson later said he told Kennedy a solution of the French-Tunisian crisis will not be easy but "it's possible."
John F. Kennedy, Adlai Stevenson
President John Kennedy walks across the White House lawn on Dec. 3, 1961 in Washington with United Nations Ambassador Adlai Stevenson to board a waiting helicopter for a flight to Middleburg, Va., and a brief weekend rest at Glen Ora, the President?s rented estate. Mrs. Kennedy and the Kennedy children already are at the Middleburg retreat.
Adlai Stevenson, Marlene Dietrich
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Adlai Stevenson and actress Marlene Dietrich are shown at the premiere of "Judgment At Nuremberg" at the RKO Palace Theater in New York, Dec. 19, 1961. Ms. Dietrich is among the stars of the film.
John Glenn and Adlai Stevenson
Adlai Stevenson, center, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, acts on behalf of photographers as he tries to arrange position of Lt. Col. John H. Glenn, Jr. and Mrs. Annie Glenn at United Nations headquarters in New York, March 2, 1962. At left is Dr, Ralph Bunche and the Glenn's daughter Lyn. Glenn and members of his family toured the U.N. as did other U.S. astronauts.
Adlai Stevenson, Art Buchwald
Vice President Emanuel Pelaez and his wife (left) pose with Adlai Stevenson (center) and writer Art Buchwald at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York on Sept. 27, 1962.
U.S. Ambassador Adlai Stevenson addresses the U.N. Security Council on the Cuban Missile Crisis, during a session at the United Nations headquarters in New York, on October 23, 1962.
Martin Luther King Jr., Adlai Stevenson, John F. Kennedy
In this Dec. 17, 1962 photo, Ambassador Adlai Stevenson, the U.S. delegate to the United Nations, shakes hands with Martin Luther King Jr., president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Atlanta, Ga., at the White House in Washington with President John F. Kennedy at right.
Jacqueline Kennedy, Adlai Stevenson
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Adlai Stevenson escorts first lady Jacqueline Kennedy from the United States Mission Building in New York City on Feb. 7, 1963. They are on their way to a luncheon at the United Nations.
Adlai Stevenson, Stanley Marcus
United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Adlai Stevenson, casts his reflection in the hood of the automobile that took him to downtown Dallas after his arrival here, Oct. 24, 1963. The ambassador will speak at a United Nations Day celebration tonight. Behind him is Stanley Marcus who was on hand to greet him.
JFK, Adlai Stevenson
Adlai Stevenson, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, speaks to a gathering at the U.S. Mission to the U.N. after the death of President Kennedy, Nov. 22, 1963.
Adlai Stevenson, a Bloomington native and then-U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, stands at the Arlington National Cemetery grave of John F. Kennedy after placing a wreath there, Dec. 10, 1963.
Robert Kennedy and Adlai Stevenson
Robert F. Kennedy, left, presents a check for $25,000 to Adlai Stevenson, chairman of the Eleanor Roosevelt Memorial Foundation in Mr. Stevenson's 42nd floor suite in the Waldorf Towers, New York City, September 18, 1964. Kennedy said the check was from the Kennedy family and was a fulfillment of a pledge made by his late brother, President John F. Kennedy, who was assassinated in 1963.
Stevenson at U.N.
Adlai E. Stevenson II, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, is shown in the General Assembly chamber of the U.N. in New York City in this Feb. 10, 1965, file photo. President John Kennedy sent Stevenson to the U.N. where he showed aerial photographs of launching sites for intermediate range missiles in Cuba during an emergency session of the U.N. Security Council Oct. 25, 1965 at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis.