NASHVILLE, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- Former actor and U.S. Sen. Fred Thompson died Sunday at age 73 in Nashville, Tenn., after a recurrence of lymphoma, his family said.
"Fred believed that the greatness of our nation was defined by the hard work, faith and honesty of its people," CNN quoted the statement as saying. "He had an enduring belief in the exceptionalism of our country, and that America could provide the opportunity for any boy or girl, in any corner of our country, to succeed in life. Our nation has lost a servant, Tennessee has lost a son, and our family has lost its rock."
Born on Aug. 19, 1942, in Sheffield, Ala., Thompson represented Tennessee in the U.S. Senate from 1994 to 2003 and was a Republican presidential contender in the run-up to the 2008 election.
Thompson's acting career placed him in films such as The Hunt for Red October, Die Hard 2 and In the Line of Fire, as well as in television's Law & Order and several of its spin-offs.
In 2007, Thompson announced he had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2004 but said the disease was in remission and that he had no symptoms.
After dropping out of the 2008 Republican primary, Thompson reportedly indicated he was interested in returning to acting.