Monday, July 05, 2010

Goodbye Mr. Byrd

Its been several days ago but on June 28th 2010 the greatest politician the state of West Virginia has ever known passed away. Robert C Byrd was the longest-serving member in the history of the United States Congress. He was first elected to the US Senate in 1958 after being a member of the House of Representatives the previous 6 years. He served and was elected to an 9th term in 2006.
I can remember watching him on television and being amazed at his knowledge. He could quote from the Bible, poems, stories and legalese with ease. He didn't use notes and would just go from one thing to another. He was already an old man suffering from Parkinson's at that point. My grandmother had Parkinson's also so maybe that's why it struck with me. He was responsible for over a billion dollars being funneled into WV for building roads, bridges and buildings. Many have criticized by many for his pork belly spending but isn't that why states elect senators, so that they will work to promote the well being of the state in the federal government? Recalling Byrd's ability to bring billions of dollars to West Virginia, former President Bill Clinton said he told the senator: "If you pave every single inch of West Virginia, it's going to be much harder to mine coal." Byrd responded that "the Constitution does not prohibit humble servants from delivering whatever they can to their constituents."
He was a man who made mistakes along the way but wasn't afraid or ashamed to admit that he was wrong. Looking at his voting record you can see how he changed over the years. We must continue to grow and learn and not stay stuck in our ways during life's journeys. There will never be a man to equal him in Senate again. This was truly the passing of a legend. These words from 2 Timothy 4:7 certainly apply to him
"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith". R.I.P Mr. Byrd and enjoy the rewards you earned on this Earth.


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