The LuLac Edition #2298, December 17th, 2012
(Photo AP archives).
DAN!!!!That’s what his campaign buttons and posters said in Hawaii. No last name needed. Daniel Inouye first came to the United States Senate in 1963 after having been elected in the off year elections of 1962. The people of the 50th state in the union sent him back to Washington ever since then. He stayed there until his death earlier today at the age of 89. Inouye is the third giant of the Senate to leave us this year. George McGovern and Arlen Specter passed away earlier this fall.
Inouye was the President Pro Tempore of the Senate since 2010 when Robert Byrd passed away. Inouye was elected to the territorial Congress in 1954 and then the territorial Senate in 1958. He never lost an election in the span (58 years) of my entire lifetime. Inouye gained recognition and prominence as a member of the Senate Select Committee on Watergate in 1973. His low keyed, measured questioning of witnesses showcased a style for the nation that others had seen before.
Inouye was wounded in WWII when his arm was severed at the elbow by a motor strike. It was later amputated at a service hospital. He stayed in the military until 1947 when he retired with the rank of Captain. He was awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart. Inouye was also awarded eight terms in the United States Senate by the people of the 50th state. That was a source of pride to him since he helped lead the way for the Hawaii territory to become part of the United States of America. Married twice, Inouye had one son Ken.
In the spring of 1972 I was in the Senate gallery when I went on a class trip with St. John’s in Pittston. I saw him walking around the Senate floor in a cobalt blue double breasted suit. He gave a short speech but measured speech on the war in Vietnam. A year later when he served on the Watergate Committee, he brought that same calm and common sense to that huge task. Arrangements are pending.
(Photo David Yonki.)