Sargent Shriver dead at 95

In this Aug. 29, 2009 photo, R. Sargent Shriver, left, is escorted to his seat in the church by his son Anthony Kennedy Shriver before funeral services for U.S. Sen. Edward Kennedy at the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica in Boston. Shriver, the exuberant public servant and Kennedy in-law whose singular career included directing the Peace Corps, fighting the "War on Poverty" and, less successfully, running for office, died Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2011. He was 95. (AP Photo/Brian Snyder)

January 18, 2011 2:51:16 PM PST
He was often known as a member of the Kennedy family, through his late wife, Eunice. But Sargent Shriver had his own share of historic achievements. Shriver died today at a hospital in suburban Washington. He was 95.

He was the first director of the Peace Corps, and led President Lyndon Johnson's "War on Poverty." From that effort came such programs as Head Start and Legal Services.

He also was Democrat George McGovern's running mate in 1972.

Shriver advised his brother-in-law, John F. Kennedy, during the 1960 presidential campaign -- and helped persuade Kennedy to make a crucial decision, despite the fears of other staffers that there would be a white backlash. Martin Luther King was jailed in Georgia that fall, and Kennedy phoned King's wife to offer support.

Shriver was someone the Kennedy family would sometimes turn to for the hardest tasks. Jacqueline Kennedy relied on him to arrange the funeral for her murdered husband.

His wife Eunice was the founder of the Special Olympics. She died in 2009 at the age of 88.

They were the parents of Maria Shriver, the wife of Arnold Schwarzenegger.