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July 24, 2014

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Hundreds pay respects to former lawmaker Joe Dini in Yerington

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The Reno Gazette-Journal, Marilyn Newton / AP

A Tuesday April 12, 2011, photo shows former Nevada Assembly Speaker Joe Dini in the Lucky Club, the Yerington casino he owned

YERINGTON — Several hundred people paid their respects at a funeral mass for Joe Dini in Yerington where the former, longtime Nevada Assembly speaker was described as a quiet, humble man who became a "legislative giant" during three decades in the legislature.

Dozens of past and present state legislators, elected and other government officials crowded into the rural high school gymnasium for Tuesday's service for the state's longest-serving assemblyman. He died April 10 at the age of 85.

Republican U.S. Sen. Dean Heller, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto and ex-Gov. and -U.S. Sen. Richard Bryan were among the dignitaries on hand. Bryan said he never met a man or woman who did not like Joe Dini. He said he was "the legislative equivalent of a grand master in chess."

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