One of the most influential senators in US history, and the last surviving brother in America’s political dynasty, Senator Edward M Kennedy of Massachutes, passed away on Tuesday night at his home on Cape Cod after a year-long struggle with brain cancer. He was 77.
In 50 years long political career, Kennedy served alongside ten presidents, including John Fitzgerald Kennedy, his brother and has, to his credit, an impressive list of legislative accomplishments on health care, civil rights, education, immigration and more.
He ran for the White House in 1980 but his attempt ended in defeat. More than two and a half decades later, he handed an endorsement to then Senator Barack Obama at a crucial point in campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, expressly equating the young candidate to President Kennedy.
Kennedy was popular as the last surviving son of America’s most glamorous political family. His death triggered an outpouring of superlatives, from Democrats and Republicans as well as foreign leaders.
“An important chapter in our history has come to an end. Our country has lost a great leader, who picked up the torch of his fallen brothers and became the greatest United States senator of our time,” Obama said in a written statement.