- Associated Press - Thursday, May 24, 2012

RICHMOND (AP) — William S. Wampler, a moderate Republican who represented southwestern Virginia in Congress for a career that spanned four decades, has died. He was 86.

Gov. Bob McDonnell said Thursday that Mr. Wampler died at his home in Bristol, Va., Wednesday night.

Mr. Wampler’s tenure in Congress began with his election in 1952, when he served a single term through 1954. He represented the 9th District in the mountainous western tip of Virginia, a district known as the “Fightin’ 9th.”

He returned to the House in 1966 and remained there until he lost in 1982 to Democrat Ric Boucher. Mr. Boucher held the seat until 2010.

His son, 52-year-old William C. Wampler Jr., represented Bristol in the state Senate from 1988 until he retired last year.