Former Missouri Governor Dies From Complications of Pneumonia

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COLUMBIA - The 48th governor of Missouri died Thursday from complications of pneumonia.

Kansas City Democrat Joseph "Walkin' Joe" Teasdale was elected governor in 1976 when he defeated then-Republican Gov. Kit Bond. Bond later defeated Teasdale in 1980. 

After his defeat, Teasdale went back to Kansas City and practiced law. 

Late Thursday night, Gov. Jay Nixon released a statement mourning the loss of Teasdale.

"Gov. Teasdale was a good man whose life was guided by a deep and abiding faith and a commitment to public service," the statement read. The statement continued, "During his tenure as Governor, Gov. Teasdale was especially known for his actions in support of Missouri seniors. He created the Division of Aging, he pushed for passage of the Nursing Home Reform Act, and he supported removal of the state sales tax on prescription drugs."

Nixon also ordered flags at all state facilities be flown at half-staff.

Teasdale's son, John, said the former governor died Thursday afternoon surrounded by his family. 

The former governor was 78.