Born just days apart in the same year, Senators Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka have dedicated their lives to improving ours. As young men, they served during World War Two, and would take divergent paths as they continued their service to Hawai’i: Inouye as a young political leader, and Akaka as an educator. Through the decades to this day, they have never stopped their service, and Hawai’i is better for it.
Daniel Ken Inouye was born in Honolulu on September 7, 1924. The son of Japanese-American immigrants, Dan has lived an all-American life. Serving in the military during World War Two, he earned the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and United States Medal of Honor. Going to college on the G.I. Bill, Dan earned a law degree. He continued his proud tradition of service in the Hawai’i legislature, then as the state of Hawai’i’s first member of Congress (as well as America’s first Japanese-American Congressman), as a U.S. Senator, and now, as the President Pro-Tempore of the U.S. Senate.
In countless ways, Dan Inouye and Danny Akaka have made Hawai’i a better place to live and call home. I’m proud to call them “Senator,” and prouder still to be able to call them “friend.”
Mahalo for your service, Senators Inouye and Akaka.