Oldest-Ever Congressman Seriously Injured In Wreck, Airlifted To Hospital

The Huffington Post is reporting that the oldest-ever member of Congress was seriously injured in an accident Saturday, Oct. 4 following an accident.

According to HuffPost, U.S. Rep. Ralph Hall, a Texas Republican, was injured in a two-car accident near the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. WFAA-TV 8, the ABC affiliate in Dallas, reports that the vehicle Hall was traveling was hit by another car.`

The Huffington Post said the oldest-ever congressman is 91-years-old. While he is the oldest member of Congress to have ever served, he is not the longest serving in the House. That honor was held by U.S. Rep. John Dingell, a Michigan Democrat, according to The Washington Post.

While both men hold records for age and years of service – Dingell was elected some 58 years ago – the late Democratic U.S. Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia holds the record for longest service, The Post reported, when you combine his years in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. Byrd entered the House in 1953, before moving to the House in until 1959, when he became one of West Virginia’s two senators. Byrd served until his death on June 28, 2010.

While Hall is the oldest-ever congressman, the seriously injured 17 term Republican will not be returning to the House in January. The move was already determined well before Saturday’s accident, Roll Call reported, noting that he lost a Republican primary earlier this year.

Dingell announced early this year his intention to retire from the House, ending a career that began when he ran to fill his father’s seat in the U.S. House.

The Huffington Post reports that while Hall’s condition at the scene of the accident was listed as serious, he “has been upgraded to stable condition. He was reportedly ‘conscious and joking’ with paramedics while being taken to the hospital.”

Hall’s accident following a tough primary loss is not the first instance for a member of either house of Congress. In 2010, the same year of Byrd’s death, former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens died in a plane crash in Alaska. The two years prior (2008), Stevens – a member of the Senate from 1969 to 2009 – lost a bitter election to then-Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich following a federal corruption trial that saw his reputation tarnished.

The plane crash that killed Stevens happened in a remote area of Alaska, leaving little hope for a severely injured individual to be located and transported to a medical facility. Others involved in the Stevens plane crash did survive.

The Huffington Post reports that Hall received some hip injuries and other minor scratches and is expected to make a full recovery from his accident.

[Image via U.S. Rep. Ralph Hall’s Twitter account]