TED KENNEDY IN BOSTON: A PHOTOGRAPHIC JOURNEY
Previewing his eulogy for Ted Kennedy, which he'll deliver on Saturday, President Barack Obama sent this email to his followers last night:
Michelle and I were heartbroken to learn this morning of the death of our dear friend, Senator Ted Kennedy.
For nearly five decades, virtually every major piece of legislation to
advance the civil rights, health and economic well-being of the
American people bore his name and resulted from his efforts.
His ideas and ideals are stamped on scores of laws and reflected in
millions of lives -- in seniors who know new dignity; in families that
know new opportunity; in children who know education's promise; and in
all who can pursue their dream in an America that is more equal and
more just, including me.
In the United States Senate, I can think of no one who engendered
greater respect or affection from members of both sides of the aisle.
His seriousness of purpose was perpetually matched by humility, warmth
and good cheer. He battled passionately on the Senate floor for the
causes that he held dear, and yet still maintained warm friendships
across party lines. And that's one reason he became not only one of the
greatest senators of our time, but one of the most accomplished
Americans ever to serve our democracy.
I personally valued his wise counsel in the Senate, where, regardless
of the swirl of events, he always had time for a new colleague. I
cherished his confidence and momentous support in my race for the
Presidency. And even as he waged a valiant struggle with a mortal
illness, I've benefited as President from his encouragement and wisdom.
His fight gave us the opportunity we were denied when his brothers John
and Robert were taken from us: the blessing of time to say thank you
and goodbye. The outpouring of love, gratitude and fond memories to
which we've all borne witness is a testament to the way this singular
figure in American history touched so many lives.
For America, he was a defender of a dream. For his family, he was a
guardian. Our hearts and prayers go out to them today -- to his
wonderful wife, Vicki, his children Ted Jr., Patrick and Kara, his
grandchildren and his extended family.
Today, our country mourns. We say goodbye to a friend and a true leader
who challenged us all to live out our noblest values. And we give
thanks for his memory, which inspires us still.
President Barack Obama