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      Columbia Chamber president Ike McLeese passes away

      <font size="2">Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce president Ike McLeese has died.</font>
      COLUMBIA (WACH) -- Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce president Ike McLeese has died.

      "Today we are deeply saddened at the loss of Ike McLeese, president and CEO of the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Sue and his family, as well as many close friends and associates," Holt Chetwood, Chair of the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce, said in a statement.

      In addition to his work with the Chamber, McLeese may be best known for his active role in protecting the Midlands' military bases from potential US Defense Department closures.

      McLeese announced he would officially leave the Chamber at the end of this year. McLeese had been with the Chamber for 20 years.