RON CAREY, 72
Former Teamsters president
Ron Carey, the former Teamsters president who pledged to rid the union of mob corruption but was later forced from leadership in a financial scandal, died Thursday at New York Hospital Medical Center of Queens of complications from lung cancer, his son Daniel Carey said.
After a stint in the Marines, Mr. Carey joined the Teamsters in 1956 while working as a driver for United Parcel Service. He became president of a local union post in New York in 1967 on a platform of challenging corrupt leadership in the organization.
In 1989, federal officials began overseeing much of the Teamsters' operations after the union settled a civil racketeering lawsuit alleging it was controlled by organized crime. The settlement required top officials to be chosen by union members, a decision that led to Mr. Carey becoming the first Teamster president elected by membership.
Mr. Carey won re-election in 1996 over James P. Hoffa, son of the former Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa, but the result was later overturned amid charges that Mr. Carey's campaign illegally used about $885,000 in union funds.