State Sen. C.B. Embry dies after an ongoing battle with cancer

Funeral arrangements set for next weekend
Published: Sep. 30, 2022 at 9:31 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 30, 2022 at 9:32 AM CDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WBKO) - State leaders and lawmakers confirmed Friday morning that former State Senator C.B. Embry, R-Morgantown, died Thursday night after an ongoing battle with cancer.

He was 81.

Embry submitted his resignation from the General Assembly on Monday due to his health.

He served in both the House of Representatives serving District 17 and District 6 as a Kentucky Senator.

Embry was elected 12 times to five different public offices that included mayor, a county judge-executive and in the General Assembly.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell commented on the death of Embry.

“C.B. was the senior statesman in Kentucky’s statehouse, valued deeply by his colleagues for both his great work – especially on behalf of the Commonwealth’s most vulnerable citizens – and for his fine character,” McConnell said. “Elaine and I are heartbroken to learn of the loss of my good friend.”

Gov. Andy Beshear shared his thoughts on Embry’s passing.

“I am saddened to learn this morning of the passing of C.B. Embry,” Beshear wrote. “He was loyal to the people of Western Kentucky and his contribution to the legislature over the last 20 years is immeasurable – he will be greatly missed.”

State Rep. Steve Sheldon said he had nothing but respect for Embry.

“He was just an all around good guy,” he said. “I can’t have anything but respect for him.”

Sheldon also said Embry was instrumental in his campaigning efforts.

“C.B. Embry was a true gentleman and the consummate public servant, taking the duty and responsibility to represent the people until the very end,” said Senate President Robert Stivers in a statement. “A dedicated family man, successful business owner, and inspirational man of faith, C.B.’s values served as a bedrock in the state Senate and his contributions to our Commonwealth stand out on their own.”

Stivers said Embry was a “passionate advocate” for public education and veterans issues, and “raised the bar on everything he touched.”

He also added that The Commonwealth is “a better place because of C.B. Embry.”

Kentucky Senate Democratic Leader Morgan McGarvey said Embry was “a person of integrity and character.”

“I enjoyed working with him on issues supporting public education and working families,” McGarvey said.

McGarvey called Embry a “warrior” talking about his battle with cancer, and that he “dutifully” showed up for the entirety of the session despite his health.

Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Dr. Ryan Quarles said he worked with Embry in the House of Representatives.

“He was known to be an early riser and extremely kind person. All who knew him will miss this unique statesman,” he said. “My prayers are with his family during this difficult time.”

Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon tweeted about the death this morning.

“I’m saddened to learn of the passing of former State Senator and State Representative C.B. Embry,” Harmon wrote. “C.B. made a lifelong commitment to being a servant leader, driven by his faith, his family and his love of our great Commonwealth.”

One of his closest colleagues since 2003 when they joined the Kentucky House of Representatives, Senator Jimmy Higdon, says he was more than just a political figure and colleague.

“He was a friend and he was one that, day or night, if you needed help, you could call him. He will be truly missed. I think that is the best compliment I could pay C.B. Embry. He was a trusted friend. I could always trust C.B. Embry,” says Higdon.

In his hometown of Morgantown, KY, he was a person that could go up and talk to anybody whether he knew you or not.

“He had never seen a stranger. He would always talk to you no matter where you are at or whatever setting you are in,” said Tim Flener, Judge Executive of Butler County.

“He made it a purpose to come by and see you. He always had kind words in everything he would say. You hardly ever saw him without a smile on his face.”

The Kentucky Majority Whip, Senator Mike Wilson, says if there was anything he needed, Embry was the man to go to.

“He was a man of his word., a man of integrity, and you could take it to the bank if he told you something. We had a great relationship, as far as the Senate goes and being neighbors. If I needed anything, he was there, and vice-versa. If he needed anything any of us would have been there for him,” said Wilson.

Funeral services for Embry will be held next Saturday, October 8th at Smith Funeral Home, he’ll be buried in the Sunnyside Cemetery in Beaver Dam, Kentucky.

C.B. Embry funeral arrangements

A masonic service will be held Friday night, October 7th, presented by the Cassia Masonic Lodge #272 in Morgantown.

Visitation will be held on Friday, Oct. 7 from 4 pm until 8 pm and Saturday from 9 am until 11 am at Smith Funeral Home.