Jack Buechner, a suburban St. Louis Republican who served for four years in the U.S. House, has died. He was 79.

ST. LOUIS — Jack Buechner, a suburban St. Louis Republican who served for four years in the U.S. House, has died. He was 79.

FMC, the association of Former Members of Congress, said in a news release that Buechner died Friday at a hospital in Washington, D.C. He was 79. No cause of death was listed.

Buechner, of Kirkwood, was elected to the Missouri House in 1972 and served there for 10 years. In 1984, he ran for Congress in Missouri's 2nd District and narrowly lost to incumbent Democrat Robert Young.

Two years later, Buechner defeated Young. He served two terms and was known for his conservative voting record before losing in an upset to Democrat Joan Kelly Horn by just 54 votes in 1990.

After leaving Congress, Buechner served for two years as president of the International Republican Institute, a nonprofit that seeks to advance freedom and democracy worldwide, and was later president of FMC. He also worked as an attorney in private practice.

"Jack Buechner was a good friend and an extraordinary legislator," Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., said in a statement Tuesday. "He knew how to get things done both in the Missouri General Assembly and the U.S. Congress. His work to encourage democracy around the world after leaving Congress made an impact."

Buechner is survived by his wife, Andrea Dravo, three sons and four grandchildren. Dravo told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that a memorial service will be in June in Washington.