Biden remembers Don Young as ‘tough’ and ‘larger than life’

President Biden commemorated the late Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), who died on Friday night, calling him “larger than life” and “tough” in a statement on Saturday.

“I knew Don Young for a long time. He always stayed true to who he was and the people of Alaska he represented. Tough. Loyal. A consensus builder,” Biden said.

“He was larger than life, but always focused on Alaskans’ everyday lives. As Dean of the House, he was the longest-serving House Republican in history—but cherished photos of his legislation being signed into law by ten presidents, Republicans and Democrats.”

On Friday night, Young’s office confirmed in a statement that the Alaska congressman, the longest-serving House Republican and dean of the House, had died. He was 88 years old and served in the lower chamber for close to 50 years.

“Don Young’s legacy as a fighter for the state will live on, as will his fundamental goodness and his honor,” his office said. “We will miss him dearly. His family, his staff, and his many friends ask Alaskans for their prayers during this difficult time.”

In his lengthy career in Congress, Young assisted in the passage of legislation that established wildlife refuge guidelines, successfully fought for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and established a 200-mile fishing limit in Alaska, among many other contributions.

“There is no doubt that few legislators have left a greater mark on their state,” Biden said. “Don’s legacy lives on in the infrastructure projects he delighted in steering across Alaska. In the opportunities he advanced for his constituents. In the enhanced protections for Native tribes he championed. His legacy will continue in the America he loved.”

Young’s office said on Saturday evening that both the White House and Capitol had lowered theirs flags to half-staff to honor the Alaska Republican, expressing gratitude for the gesture.
— Updated at 10:16 p.m.
Tags Alaska Don Young Don Young Joe Biden Joe Biden

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