Sen. Thurman: Indestructible

10/28/1997 AT 12:00 AM EST

South Carolina Sen. Strom Thurmond, at 97 the oldest senator in American history, was "very alert" and hoping to return home from the hospital today, an aide told the Associated Press. The Republican lawmaker, who's had a series of health problems the past two years (including a battle with prostate cancer), was taken to Washington's Walter Reed Army Medical Center on Saturday after losing consciousness during lunch. "(Doctors) still have not conclusively determined the cause of the occurrence," spokeswoman Genevieve Erny said yesterday, speculating, "it may be the result of dehydration."

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