HONOLULU – The late Sen. Daniel Inouye was remembered Sunday as an American hero whose legacy as a war veteran and longtime senator would be felt across Hawaii for years to come.
The memorial service at Honolulu’s National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific was attended by about 1,000 people, including President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Hawaii’s congressional delegation and a number of other senators, cabinet secretaries and other dignitaries.
Daniel was the best senator among us all, Reid told those assembled, adding later: Whenever we needed a noble man to lean on, we turned to Sen. Dan Inouye. He was fearless.
The cemetery is the final resting place to thousands of World War II veterans. More than 400 members of the storied Japanese-American 442nd Regimental Combat Team – of which Inouye was a part – are buried at the site.
Several 442nd veterans attended the Sunday morning service, the latest in a number of tributes and honors for Inouye after the 88-year-old’s Dec. 17 death from respiratory complications.
Inouye was the first Japanese-American elected to both houses of Congress and the second-longest serving senator in U.S. history, at 50 years.