LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Larry Forgy, a Republican stalwart who ran for governor three times in Kentucky, losing a heartbreakingly close election in 1995, has died. He was 82.

His sister, Republican state Sen. Alice Forgy Kerr of Lexington, said on her Facebook page that he died early Thursday at University of Kentucky Hospital. He suffered a heart attack in 2016, and Kerr said he had been in declining health for several years.

His 1995 running mate, London attorney Tom Handy, told the Lexington Herald-Leader that Forgy was an independent thinker and sometimes at odds with Republican leadership.