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Wednesday
Jun052013

Lautenberg Remembered by Political Leaders, Family

Jason Kempin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- After a funeral at a New York synagogue, the flag-draped casket of New Jersey Democratic Senator Frank Lautenberg has started the trip toward his final resting place.

Lautenberg’s casket will be brought via Amtrak, a service which he championed fiercely over the years, from Secaucus, N.J., to Washington, D.C., Wednesday afternoon.

The love of both places where he spent his life and career -- New Jersey and Washington, D.C. -- was underscored in the eulogies given by the Lautenberg family and from top Democratic political leaders, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Sen. Bob Menendez, D-NJ., and Vice President Joe Biden.

“As Frank would say it’s not where you sit that counts but it’s where you stand and there’s never any doubt where he stood,” Secretary Clinton said recalling their days in the Senate together.

The senator passed away Monday at the age of 89 due to complications from viral pneumonia after a 28-year career in the Senate, holding the title for the last actively serving veteran of World War II in the Senate.

“Frank had great character, an exceptional character,” Biden, who served with him for years in the senate said. “We saw that in the way he lived his life but by how he died -- serving the people of New Jersey until the very end.”

The senator recently announced that he would retire and not run again in his 2014 reelection race, a decision the vice president said the senator took very seriously and shared some of their personal discussions.

“He said ‘Joe I don’t think I can run -- my legs,’ He said ‘my legs.’ And it was clear to me he desperately, desperately wanted to run again,” Biden said. “And I think the reason is not because he wanted to be Senator, but your dad never quit. He never quit anything. He never gave up. He never gave in.”

Forty-one senators and six members of the House of Representatives attended the funeral Wednesday, as did New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

The senator’s casket will lie in repose on the Lincoln Catafalque in the Capitol on Thursday and will be laid to rest Friday at Arlington National Cemetery.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio