Birmingham, AL – State Representative John Hawkins died Tuesday morning at a Birmingham hospital after an extended illness. He was 77. Hawkins was a veteran lawmaker whose career transcended Alabama's change to a two-party state. Hawkins, a Republican who represented Vestavia Hills, first became a member of the Alabama House of Representatives in 1959 as a Democrat and served until 1965. He was a member of the state Senate from 1966 until 1974. Hawkins returned to the House in 1990 as a Republican and continued to serve until his death. Hawkins worked to pass a mandatory seat belt law and a law requiring children to wear helmets when riding bicycles.