Kennedy Tribute Edition (August 2009)

Ted Kennedy: A life of service

With the passing of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), this nation lost a great patriot, a force for justice and equality and a passionate voice for a brighter future.

Remembering my dear friend Ted

President John F. Kennedy was fond of quoting the biblical passage that tells us: “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required” (Luke 12:48). When I think of that passage, I think of the life, career and accomplishments of his brother, my dear friend and colleague, Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.).

One of a kind

I have a lot of acquaintances in Congress and many friends, but one who stood out above the rest and to whom I always felt close was Ted Kennedy. It was a privilege to know him as a friend, and it was an honor to work with one of the most dedicated and knowledgeable senators I ever met. His passing is truly a great loss for our country. I am hopeful, however, that in mourning his death, we will be inspired to continue to fight for the causes to which he dedicated himself so tirelessly and work together to pass the comprehensive healthcare reform that he called “the cause of my life.”

A dedicated servant and a dear friend

As a very junior senator from Idaho, I selected an office on the third floor of the Russell Building, which happened to be next door to Sen. Ted Kennedy’s office. The first day that we were allowed to officially occupy the space, in came Sen. Kennedy, walking through each of the offices and introducing himself to all of my staff and welcoming each of them to the Russell. Later that day, a beautiful bouquet of flowers showed up for my wife, Patricia, with a note saying, “Welcome to the neighborhood — Ted.” With that, Patricia and I began a wonderful and enduring relationship with Ted and Vicki Kennedy.

In memory of Ted Kennedy

Sometimes the best friendships are made under unlikely circumstances. Such was the case with the Kennedys and the Reagans.

Kennedy brought intensity, passion to the Senate

Coming from a wealthy, famous family, Sen. Kennedy could have taken shortcuts. But he never did that — he brought a passion and intensity to his work the likes of which I will never forget.

Tributes to Edward M. Kennedy

We’ve lost the irreplaceable center of our family and joyous light in our lives, but the inspiration of his faith, optimism, and perseverance will live on in our hearts forever. He loved this country and devoted his life to serving it. He always believed that our best days were still ahead, but it’s hard to imagine any of them without him. - The Kennedy family