Evangelist Billy Graham released from hospital after tests

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:56pm EST

Billy Graham is pictured during a celebration for his 95th birthday in Asheville, North Carolina, in this November 7, 2013 handout photo provided by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. REUTERS/Billy Graham Evangelistic Association/Handout via Reuters

Billy Graham is pictured during a celebration for his 95th birthday in Asheville, North Carolina, in this November 7, 2013 handout photo provided by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

Credit: Reuters/Billy Graham Evangelistic Association/Handout via Reuters

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WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina (Reuters) - U.S. evangelist Billy Graham was released from a North Carolina hospital on Thursday after undergoing tests and observation for respiratory congestion, hospital officials said.

Graham, who turned 95 on November 7, was admitted on Tuesday for a pulmonary-related issue.

"Mr. Graham was alert and in good spirits during his stay," said Dr. William Hathaway, chief medical officer at Mission Hospital in Asheville. "We are pleased with the results of Mr. Graham's evaluation."

Graham underwent similar tests during a stay at the hospital last month, the hospital said.

Known for his dynamic delivery of the Christian gospel during seven decades in the pulpit in America and abroad, Graham has been in frail health in recent years and has not preached publicly since 2006.

He marked his 95th birthday earlier this month with a rare public appearance. Nearly 900 people, including celebrities, gathered in Asheville to celebrate his life.

(Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Scott Malone and Gunna Dickson)

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