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Bill Young 'gravely ill'

Published Oct. 18, 2013

From the Young family: U.S. Rep. C. W. Bill Young's condition turned for the worse over night and he is gravely ill. His doctors say his prognosis is guarded.

Young, 82, has been at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where last week he announced his retirement, effective after his current term expires in 2014. His illness was attribued to back issues but it has become clear since then that he was in worse condition.

He is surrounded by family and friends. Yesterday, Young got a call from former President George W. Bush, who thanked the lawmaker for his support, as an appropriator, of the U.S. military.

In a telephone interview with the Tampa Bay Times last week, Young cited his health and a desire to spend more time with family. Young also recalled a conversation years ago with Sen. John Stennis in which he asked the Mississippi Democrat when Young would know it's time to leave.

"You'll know when it's time," Stennis told him.

"I'm taking that advice now," said Young.

Young was elected to Congress in 1970 after spending 10 years in the state Senate.