Flags lowered in tribute to NY state Sen. Jose Peralta after unexpected death

NEW YORK -- Flags have been lowered to half-staff on New York state and New York City buildings to honor state Sen. Jose Peralta, who died unexpectedly at age 47.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's office announced the tributes Friday. They are Democrats, as was Peralta.

He died Wednesday night after being taken to a hospital.

Medical examiners haven't yet determined what caused his death. His widow, Evelyn, said he'd been feeling ill and his condition suddenly worsened.

Peralta represented parts of Queens and was the first Dominican-American elected to New York's Senate. He served there for eight years after another eight in the state Assembly.

He lost a primary in September to Jessica Ramos. She takes office in January.

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