Rose Clayton Cochran, 73 - who became a focal point in the reelection campaign of her husband, Sen. Thad Cochran, when a man was accused of taking photos of her bedridden, to use against the Republican - died Friday at a hospice facility in Ridgeland, Miss., after a long battle with dementia, the senator's spokesman, Chris Gallegos, said.

Daughter Kate Cochran, an associate professor at the University of Southern Mississippi, posted on Facebook a photo of her holding her mother's hand. "My beloved mother died this morning, after two weeks in hospice care. I took this picture a few days ago because a friend of mine remembered how beautiful her hands were," she wrote.

From Washington, where he was waiting to vote on a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown, Cochran issued a brief statement saying that he and his family are grateful to those who cared for his wife during her extended illness. She had lived in a nursing home for 13 years. Cochran remained in Mississippi after Thanksgiving to spend time with his family and had returned to Washington on Monday to deal with the budget and other issues, Gallegos said. - AP