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Remember Senator Daniel K. Inouye & His Work on the Honolulu Rail Project

US Senator Daniel K. Inouye once said, “People have asked me how I want to be remembered and I say very simply that I represented the people honestly and to the best of my abilities. I think I did okay.” He did more than ok, and it is our responsibility to ensure his work is finished. (Click here to support Senator Inouye's work on the Honolulu Rail project)

With this past weekend’s observation of Memorial Day, a day set aside to commemorate those in the armed services who paid the ultimate sacrifice in the name of democracy and freedom, the story of Senator Inouye’s true determination during World War II, came to mind. Although wounded by a gunshot to his stomach, he pushed forward in attack and crawled within 10 yards of one of three Nazi Bunkers situated just outside Tuscany, Italy. That was when his right arm, still gripping a live grenade, was shot off. Second Lieutenant in the Army’s 442nd infantry regiment, he was one of many extraordinary soldiers in the all Japanese-American squad. “Go for Broke” was their motto, and, undeterred, he pried the grenade from his severed arm and hurled it at the German bunker to destroy it.

While he came close to giving his life on the battlefield, Senator Inouye lived on to have a profound impact on our nation. In fact, as he later recalled his wartime injuries, he said the doctors mumbled as they looked at him, and was approached, two minutes later, by a chaplain who opened with the words, “God loves you.”

To that Senator Inouye replied, “I know that. I love Him too…But I’m not ready to meet Him yet!”

By the end of his service in to our Nation that ended in the Senate, his seniority in office made him 3rd in succession for the US Presidency.

With everything he accomplished, all his power, one thing remained certain: Senator Inouye always remembered his roots and his home in Hawaii. His orphan mother having been adopted by a native Hawaiian family, he had a special connection with the people of Hawaii. Senator Inouye understood the need for a transportation system that served all working people of Hawaii, including those who lived in places like Nanakuli and Waianae.During his time on the US Senate Appropriations Committee, he was the man behind major federally funded construction projects in Hawaii, including Honolulu’s Rail Project. Senator Inouye lived just long enough to secure federal funding for that project, a project that now hangs in the balance, as our State House of Representatives decides how to provide the required matching State funds.

Senator Inouye was a man willing to lay down his life for what he believed in, and, for so many years, we were the beneficiaries of his courage and strength. It is up to us to ensure Senator Inouye’s legacy lives on. It is a legacy firmly founded in the Aloha he felt for his home in Hawaii. Let the State House through House Speaker Scott Saiki know you support Honolulu Rail by clicking here. Please also forward this email to family and friends so they may submit their support for Honolulu Rail.

Me ke aloha pumehana,

Dayton M. Nakanelua
UPW State Director

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