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Conrad Burns

Former Sen. Conrad Burns shares a laugh with former congressman Rick Hill Friday during a GOP breakfast June 18, 2010, to honor the senator for his past service.

Former U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns, R-Mont., will be interred Monday at Arlington National Cemetery.

Burns was a Marine Corps veteran. He died at home in Billings of natural causes, April 28, 2016. He was 81. Immediate plans were made for his interment at the cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., but burial was delayed.

Monday night, Republican Sens. Mike Enzi, of Wyoming, and Pat Roberts, of Kansas, will host a reception for Burns in the Mike Mansfield Room of the U.S. Capitol.

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Montana’s longest-running Republican senator, Burns was elected in 1988 and served through January 2007. Burns was defeated by current Sen. Jon Tester, a Democrat.

A native of Missouri, Burns was a livestock auctioneer, traveling salesmen and agriculture news broadcaster. He was considered a long-shot candidate to defeat Democratic incumbent John Melcher when Burns won in 1988. He had been a Yellowstone County Commissioner beforehand.

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Agriculture and Politics Reporter

Politics and agriculture reporter for The Billings Gazette.