“My wife Jeanette and I send our condolences to the Inouye family and to the people of Hawaii. When I was elected to the Senate, Daniel Inouye was easily the most recognizable name and face to me, as I remember watching him in action as a teenager following politics. When I arrived in Washington, he was one of the first senators I sought out to introduce myself to in the first days after being sworn in. I always admired his story and how he was the last of the Greatest Generation of Americans that served this country in World War II and then in peace in the U.S. Senate.
“From running down to Pearl Harbor to help others as a medic when our country was attacked, to volunteering to serve in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, Senator Inouye exemplified the Greatest Generation. He was a war hero and his bravery earned him our highest military distinction, the Medal of Honor. I have always lamented that I got to the Senate too late to meet Senators Edward Kennedy and Robert Byrd. But I will proudly tell my grandchildren that, at least for a brief time, I served with the great Daniel Inouye.”