17 Dec Senator Daniel Inouye has just died
Senator Daniel Inouye, the nation’s longest-serving senator and a decorated World War II combat veteran, died Monday at 88. Inouye’s office said the senator died of “respiratory complications” Monday evening. His last word, according to a statement released by his staff, was “Aloha.” The long-time senator had been hospitalized since early December because of respiratory problems.
He endorsed my son for admission into West Point. When we delivered Sean to West Point and then traveled to Washington, DC, he set up tours for us all around the Capitol. He met us in his office and we had quite the visit. He was tremendously charming. He told a story about going to a White House function during the Eisenhower era and when he was delivered by limousine to the White House front door, no one knew who he was as he was the very first Japanese ever elected to the Senate. He was announced as the King of Siam much to the delight of his wife. He was in Washington through 11 different presidents. That is quite a feat.
He did much to benefit Hawaii. He did not allow the downsizing of any of the military bases here. As head of the Ways and Means Committee he was quite powerful but always reasonable and able to negotiate. He will be missed greatly by his family, friends and the entire State of Hawaii.