Edward Kennedy, a US Senator since 1962, has passed away after losing his battle with brain cancer. Kennedy was 77 years old and was the third longest serving Senator behind Strom Thurmond and Robert Byrd.
Regardless of your opinion of Ted Kennedy's politics, I think we would all agree that he, and the entire Kennedy family, have dedicated their lives to public service.
Kennedy, the youngest of nine siblings, experienced tremendous loss and so much tragedy throughout his life, including the loss of two brothers to assassins. His career also was marred by scandal, specifically Chappaquiddick, and other struggles with personal behavior.
But he never gave up and to the end stayed committed to his beliefs. He worked the political system to ensure legislation he was passionate about became law, even if it meant compromising with his Republican counterparts.
So, like him or hate him, Ted Kennedy made his mark on our country. In today's world of politics by polling and partisanship, we've lost one of the few American originals who helped shape our national debate for the past 46 years.