Inouye's widow says he would have been 'overwhelmed' by tributes

Inouye's widow says he would have been 'overwhelmed' by tributes

WASHINGTON D.C. (HawaiiNewsNow) - Irene Inouye, widow of the late Sen. Dan Inouye, thanked the people of Hawaii and elsewhere for the outpouring of support for his family following his death on Monday.

Just two days after her husband died, Irene Inouye was in the Senate Appropriations room Wednesday with top federal, state and city officials to as the feds committed to giving the city $1.5 billion in federal transit funds for rail.

"This was one of his top priorities and I think if he were here, he would say it's an important milestone," Irene Inouye told Hawaii News Now at the U.S. Capitol. "We have to get it built. So the day we can finally celebrate is when it finally opens."

She said she has received what she called a tremendous outpouring of support since Senator Inouye's death on Monday.

"Certainly a lot of people are grieving, a lot of us are, but I think he would have been very happy to know how beloved with the people of Hawaii, with those in Washington," she said.

Irene Inouye also spoke about the rare honor that happens Thursday, when Inouye will lie in state in the U.S. Capitol rotunda. Just 31 people have lain in state in the rotunda since 1852.

"I think he would have been really overwhelmed by the outpouring and the way in which his colleagues have chosen to pay tribute to this life," she said.

Tuesday, less than 24 hours after her husband died, she went to his Senate staff office to visit with his employees, while Senators and Congressional staff members lined up to sign condolence books in tribute.

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