Samuelson, a Republican, served as a Mecklenburg County Commissioner from 2000-2004 before serving four terms in the NC House.
The Charlotte Observer notes “she became known for her stands against abortion and for the environment, and for an ability to forge agreements between warring sides. She was endorsed by both the Sierra Club and the National Rifle Association.”
Governor Roy Cooper described Samuelson on social media as a “dedicated leader and champion for our state.”
Funeral services will be held Friday at 2:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Charlotte.
Here’s how others are remembering Samuelson:
U.S. Senator Thom Tillis:
“Her devotion to her faith and her family served her well in the halls of the North Carolina legislature, where she worked with both sides of the aisle to become one of the most influential leaders in the state. As Speaker of the House, there was no one I counted on more than Ruth Samuelson.
“Ruth bravely fought this disease with the same strength, grace and dignity that have defined her life’s work. In doing so, she left a final legacy of unshakable faith and unwavering hope that should inspire us all. As we mourn her loss and pray for her family, we rejoice in knowing that the faith that guided Ruth’s life has now carried her home.”
Rep. Ruth Samuelson's infectious personality & powerful impact on public service in NC remain close to our hearts. We will miss Ruth dearly. pic.twitter.com/JAL145Zi0O
— Speaker Tim Moore (@NCHouseSpeaker) January 23, 2017
My thoughts and prayers are w/ the family of Ruth Samuelson.She & I were a good team fighting to protect clean energy and NC's environment
— Pricey Harrison (@priceyharrison) January 23, 2017
— Rep. Jon Hardister (@JonHardister) January 23, 2017
I'm so very sorry of Ruth's passing. She was a woman full of grace, kindness and a phenomenal #ncga member. My prayers are with her family.
— Tricia Cotham (@triciacotham) January 23, 2017
— Nathan Ramsey (@NathanRamsey115) January 23, 2017
— Rep. Grier Martin (@GrierMartin) January 23, 2017