Former Westchester County Executive Andrew O’Rourke dies at 79

Posted at 12:03 PM, Jan 04, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-04 12:07:13-05
Andrew O'Rourke

Andrew O’Rourke ran Westchester County from 1983 to 1998.

Former Westchester County Executive Andrew P. O’Rourke died Thursday night at the age of 79.

County Executive Robert P. Astorino issued a statement Friday morning discussing the legacy of O’Rourke, who was county executive from 1983 to 1998.

“The Westchester County Center would not be here today if he had not initiated and championed its complete rehabilitation. The Westchester County Airport might still have a Quonset hut for a terminal if not for him. And our county’s North and South County Trailways would probably not exist. These are just a few of the many things he accomplished as county executive.”

O’Rourke began as  Yonkers councilman, a county legislator and was ultimately a State Supreme Court justice in Putnam County.

The  Republican unsuccessfully challenged Democrat Mario Cuomo  for governor in 1986. Cuomo, who was running for a second term when O’Rourke challenged him, would serve for two more terms before losing to Republican George Pataki in 1994.