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U.S. employee dies after 71 years of service

Harold "Bruno" Mangum, the U.S. government's longest-tenured employee, died Thursday after 71 years of federal service, nearly all with the Department of Agriculture. He was 90.

Mangum started as a supply clerk for President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Agricultural Adjustment Administration in Raleigh, N.C., on June 9, 1936. He spent a year on active duty with the Navy during World War II, then worked for most of the next 60 years as a conservation specialist in the state, according to the USDA.

He had battled various illnesses in the past year, using a fraction of the more than 6,000 hours of sick leave he had accumulated during his decades of government work, the USDA said. The next-longest continuously serving federal employee had been on the job for only 66 years as of June 30, according to the federal Office of Personnel Management.

Mangum, born in Wake Forest, N.C., on Dec. 18, 1916, grew up helping out with his family's cotton gin. He died in Raleigh, where he lived most of his life. He was preceded in death by his wife and had no children.