Melody Bruce Musgrove Photo courtesy of Ole Miss

Melody Bruce Musgrove was a former┬áDirector of U.S. Department of Education’s office of Special Education Programs.

According to the Associated Press, the wife of former Mississippi Governor Ronnie Musgrove has passed away after a battle with cancer.

Melody Bruce Musgrove married the former Democratic Governor in August of 2007, over three years after he finished his service in the state’s highest office. She died on Monday at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota at the age of 61. She had been receiving treatment for leukemia.

Melody also served as a former U.S. education official as the director of the U.S. Department of Education’s office of Special Education Programs from 2010 until 2016.

She once worked as a professor at the University of Mississippi School of Education where she was the co-director of the Graduate Center for the Study of Early Learning.

Melody was born in Clarksdale and grew up in Mendenhall. She worked as a special education teacher and earned a master’s degree and doctorate from the University of Southern Mississippi. She went on to work as a school administrator in Brookhaven and Lawrence County before working as the Director of Special Education for the Mississippi Department of Education in the early 2000’s. She went on to become an adviser and policy consultant to LRP Publications.