Hundreds honor Senator Inouye at State Capitol

Hundreds bid aloha to Sen. Inouye at Punchbowl memorial service
© Mathew Ursua
© Mathew Ursua

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Six pallbearers from the Hawaii National Guard Honor Guard carried Daniel K. Inouye's casket into the State Capitol. It was a long slow walk, a final salute for Hawaii's senior Senator.

"Today we bid aloha to a beloved friend and leader. For decades he has served as an inspiration to us all, a shining example of all that is good in Hawaii," State Senate President Shan Tsutsui said.

Hundreds crowded into the Capitol rotunda to pay their respects to the man who spent his life in service to his state and to his country.

House Speaker Calvin Say hailed him as someone who stuck by his convictions.

"He supported the less fortunate and the less influential when he thought that their cause was right," he said.

The lying in state ceremony was a chance for the people of Hawaii to say thank you. Remarks were short and to the point -- reflections on Inouye's influence, inspiration and island roots.

"As influential as he became in Washington, DC, he always stayed true to his roots in Hawaii and always looked out for the little guy," State Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald said.

The four speakers represented Hawaii's judiciary, legislative and executive branches of government.

Governor Neil Abercrombie had the final say and a personal message.

"Dan, all leadership is accomplished. All excellence achieved. All duty done. All tasks completed," he said. "Rest easy now. You are home with us in paradise."

The Inouye's wanted a simple and short ceremony. On his death bed, one of the Senator's last words was aloha. The Capitol event gave Hawaii an opportunity to bid aloha to him.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved