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May 27, 2008


Like the rest of the nation, I was stunned and saddened by the recent news about Senator Edward “Ted” Kennedy’s health. It seemed to knock the breath from our collective lungs here at the Coalition. But, in true Kennedy nature, Senator Kennedy is leading us through pain and grief yet again. With stoic pride and strength, he is showing us that patience and understanding are the ways to get through a rough time—not by reacting in anger.

The same was true when his brothers, President John F. Kennedy and presidential candidate Senator Robert Kennedy, were gunned down and murdered. Although racked with grief, he refused to respond to the tragedy by calling on his fellow Americans to take up arms against one another. Nor did he himself exhibit a need for retribution. In those dark moments, he remained calm and let go of his fear and anger. And it was faith and reason that brought him through.

As a college student, I had the opportunity to serve as an intern in the office of Senator John F. Kennedy. That was a unique experience I will always treasure. His assassination and the shootings of Senator Robert Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. were the major reasons for the founding of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence. Over the intervening years, it has been a great pleasure to work with Senator Ted Kennedy on a series of important gun control measures.

I have the utmost admiration for the senator for his years of leadership and counsel. Teddy and Vicki, you are in our thoughts, prayers and hearts. May peace be with you. We look forward to having you back in Washington soon.

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