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RALEIGH, N.C. -- State Rep. Jim Fulghum has died, weeks after announcing he was being treated for cancer.

Molly Fulghum Heintz says her father died at his Raleigh home on Saturday evening. He was 70 years old. Heintz says her father was diagnosed in June with esophageal cancer. Earlier this month, he wrote the state and Wake County election boards to pull out of the election for the 15th Senate District seat, citing ongoing treatment. Last week, Republican Party officials selected John M. Alexander Jr. to replace Fulghum in the race for the seat of Sen. Neal Hunt, who is retiring.

Heintz says funeral services will be held Wednesday at Edenton Street United Methodist in Raleigh. A visitation is planned for the evening before at the church, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

House Speaker Thom Tillis (R-Mecklenburg) released the following statement regarding the death of Rep. Jim Fulghum (R-Wake):

"I am saddened to learn of the passing of Rep. Jim Fulghum this weekend. The residents of Wake County were lucky to have Dr. Fulghum represent them – his leadership as a legislator was second only to his compassion and expertise as a doctor serving his constituents and the state of North Carolina. He was a friend who will be missed by me and our entire chamber and my deepest sympathies go to his family and friends during this very difficult time."

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