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Former New York governor Mario Cuomo dead at 82

Former New York governor Mario Cuomo speaks to the media outside Manhattan federal court, Monday, March 19, 2012, in New York. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/ Louis Lanzano

New York’s iconic former governor, Mario Cuomo, has died at the age of 82.

Cuomo had been hospitalized recently to treat a heart condition.

His son, Chris Cuomo, host of CNN’s New Day, says the former governor died at home on Thursday shortly before 5 p.m.

Cuomo served three terms as governor of New York from 1983 to 1995.

His son, Andrew, is the current governor of New York and was just sworn in to his second term a day ago.

Cuomo is also survived by his wife and three other children.

Mario Cuomo was born in Queens and was the son of Italian immigrants who ran a grocery store during the great depression.

He nearly had a career in baseball instead of politics and briefly signed a minor-league contract within the Pittsburgh Pirates’ system.

But Cuomo ended up turning his attention to school.

He got a law degree from St. John’s university, where he met his wife Matilda Raffa.

The two married in 1952.

He rose to national prominence with a speech criticizing Ronald Reagan at the 1984 democratic convention.