Staff File Photo / Former U.S. Rep., U.S. Sen. and Cabinet member William E. Brock was a groundbreaker for the resurgence of Republicans in Tennessee.

Here are some of the current and former Tennessee officials who are paying tribute to the late former U.S. senator, congressman, Republican National Committee chair, U.S. trade representative and U.S. labor secretary Bill Brock, who died Thursday:

"Bill Brock was a dedicated public servant and patriot who will be dearly missed by many. He lived a life of service to Tennesseans and Americans, from serving in our military to representing the United States as our trade representative and labor secretary. It was a privilege to consider him a friend of mine. I am sending my heartfelt condolences to his wife, Sandy. I am asking Tennesseans to join me in keeping his family and friends in our prayers."

- U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee

"A Navy veteran, Bill was a Tennessean first and foremost who had a deep love for Chattanooga where he was born. Tennessee has a rich history of sending transformative leaders to represent them in Washington — many of whom went on to serve in congressional leadership, a cabinet post or in higher office — and Bill is certainly a part of that amazing legacy."

- U.S. Sen. Bill Hagerty, R-Tennessee

"I am incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of Sen. Bill Brock. Sen. Brock was an institution in East Tennessee. Throughout his career of public service, he always put the people of East Tennessee first – he leaves behind a legacy of immeasurable leadership and service to our nation. Sen. Brock will be dearly missed."

- U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, R-Ooltewah

"Sen. Brock served our country with distinction and honor and made our state proud. His care and concern about our citizenry was always on display until the very end. I will miss his kind words of encouragement and cheerful nature, and my heart goes out to Sandy and his family."

- Former U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee

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Remembering Bill Brock

"He was probably the most humble candidate and elected official I've ever seen. He had a great grasp of economics, he had good principles. It was extremely to be easy for him and to work real hard. His voice is missed greatly in Washington."

- State Sen. Todd Gardenhire, R-Chattanooga

"I had the privilege of standing on his shoulders in the 3rd Congressional District of Tennessee because he blazed the trail in 1961, 1962...He set the highest of standards. There would never have been a Congressman Zach Wamp if there hadn't been a Congressman Bill Brock. Period."

- Former Congressman Zach Wamp

"He's one of the most interesting political people I've known because he probably evolved more than any I'd known. First of all, he deserved his place in Tennessee history because he kind of broke the barrier for Republicans ... He [later] evolved from sort of a right-wing Republican to very much a centrist and I think a progressive in his different roles. ... I don't know that I've seen any other politician in my experience move that far across the political spectrum in their career and do it so gracefully and so authentically."

- Tom Ingram, former journalist, political and public affairs consultant and chief of staff to Republican governor and later U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee