Mark Larson on the life and legacy of Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld has died at the age of 88.

According to a statement from his family, Rumsfeld was surrounded by loved ones at the time of his death.

The Chicago native served in the U.S. Navy as a pilot and flight instructor from 1954 to 1957 and then with the US Navy reserves until 1989 when he retired as a captain.

In 1975, Rumsfeld made history by becoming the youngest defense secretary under President Gerald Ford.

In 2001, Rumsfeld held that role again during the George W. Bush administration.

He was also awarded the presidential medal of freedom in 1977.

No word yet has been given on his cause of death.

Mark Larson, KUSI Contributor and AM 760 Radio Host, joined KUSI’s Logan Byrnes to discuss his friendship with Rumsfeld.

Larson noted that he would sometimes call Rumsfeld to have him on his show, and even had the honor of meeting him several years ago through the Reagan Ranch in Santa Barbara.

Although controversial at times, there was no better patriot, Larson said.

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