We knew this was coming, but it is still a shock.
Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, a son of one of the most storied families in American politics, a man who knew triumph and tragedy in near-equal measure and who will be remembered as one of the most effective lawmakers in the history of the Senate, died Tuesday night. He was 77.
There will be a lot of tributes, honors, and memories from people around the nation and around the world who are far more important, insightful, and who knew him far better than I. All I can add is that this loss to his family and to the nation is deeply felt and it goes beyond politics. If you are under the age of 60, you never lived a day without a Kennedy representing Massachusetts in the United States Senate. But beyond the politics, beyond the liberal vs. conservative, beyond the mystique of the Kennedy family, he was a true representative of the people of his state and, in a larger sense, the rest of us. He had his flaws — and some people will remind us of them over the next few days — but he always wanted the best for the nation, not for how it benefited him but for how it would make this a better place to live.
I hold him, his family, and the rest of us in the Light.