The Lion’s Torch

In these early morning hours, I try to find the words to describe how saddened I am upon hearing the news on the passing of Senator Edward Kennedy.  It is the end of a legacy that spanned many decades and impacted millions of lives.  He was the youngest of a political dynasty that took hold in the 1960s and never looked back.  He had to endure losing two of his older brothers, President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert Kennedy, to assassins bullets…and had to bear the torch as the patriarch of the family.

Nicknamed the Lion of the Senate, he played a major role in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act, and the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act.  Senator Kennedy has been missed in 2009 by both Democrats and Republicans that have been attempting to work on a healthcare reform bill.

In 1968, Senator Kennedy delivered the eulogy at his brother’s, Robert, funeral.   He said that his brother was “a good and decent man who saw wrong and tried to right it; who saw suffering and tried to heal it; who saw war and tried to stop it.”  And that is how he wanted the public to remember him.  In turn, though, it us who will remember Senator Kennedy as that lion that was willing to stand up when the time was right and to support the right course of action…even if it wasn’t the most popular amongst the public.

America has lost the last remaining hitch to a dynasty that became our royalty and our glimpse into a time that has long passed us by.  For everyone out that that is reading this, and as great sadness still wells up from within the depths of my heart, I leave you with a quote of his.  Take it as you will…and apply it how you must.  For it truly captures the character of Senator Kennedy.  “Hope still lives and the dream shall never die.”  Even with his passing, the torch that he has carried for so long still burns bright.  It is us who now have to carry his torch.  It is now upon us to light the way into the future.  He was a positive voice for so long for equality in our nation.  Let’s let him know that we heard him loud and clear and raise up our voices for him now.

Senator Edward M. Kennedy

1932 – 2009


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