Ed Koch, mayor who became a symbol of New York City, dies at 88

Spokesman: Koch suffered congestive heart failure

NEW YORK - Former Mayor Ed Koch, the famous politician who became a symbol of New York City, has died at age 88.

Spokesman George Arzt says Koch died Friday morning of congestive heart failure.

Koch is credited for rescuing New York from near-financial ruin during three City Hall terms. He embodied New York for the rest of the world. He won a national reputation with his feisty style and his trademark question, "How'm I doing?"

During his years as mayor, from 1978 to 1989, his tight fiscal policies pulled the city out of severe financial difficulties. But homelessness and racial tensions soared and critics charged that City Hall's responses were ineffective.

His mark on the city was set in steel when the Queensboro Bridge, connecting Manhattan to Queens, was renamed in Koch's honor in 2011.

Koch served as the judge on "The People's Court" in the late 1990s.

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