Posted on: Monday, September 30, 2002

Tributes to the late U.S. Rep. Patsy Mink

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She inspired an advocate

Patsy was an inspiration to me to become involved with the political system and that involvement has spurred me to run for office myself.

Back in 1994 I sent a letter to Ms. Mink about a problem we were having down in Honaunau on Hawai'i island. She personally called me at home one evening to talk about it and one week later she had resolved the problem.

This kind of hands on response is the basis of what representation is all about.

She helped me believe that the people can use the system effectively and set me in motion as a community advocate.

Many times since then Patsy has been helpful to our community and responsive to the community voice. She is a person and a warrior that we can all look up to. She always stood for her convictions and those of her constituents.

I hope to be able to live up to her example throughout my career. I'm sure there are thousands of Hawai'i's citizens with similar stories about Patsy.

Mahalo Nui, Patsy.

Jack Kelly

. . .

Not ordinary

Dear everyone who knew and respected Rep. Patsy Mink,

Rep. Mink was not an ordinary politician. (I learned about her passing on all things the NewsWorld International Canadian Broadcasting news channel.

I, a Big Islander, will sorely miss her because she did what a lot of other politicians failed to do, and that is listen to her constituents and voice our concern. Many times when us Neighbor Islanders were concern about something me and others I knew would write to her because she was the only one who would listened and do something. She was smart, brave and most of all pono. Many you be forever remembered for all things you have done.

Amelia Drury

. . .

'Aloha, Patsy'

I would just like to say, "ALOHA PATSY." She was so nice to my wife and I when we visited her office in Washington, D.C., the year before last.

I suspect that she is somehow still on her "soap box," and will serve there of her own volition, for eternity. God bless her!

ALOHA, Patsy, from Maui, the best island on the planet.

Robert and Katherine Hartman
Lahaina, Maui

. . .

A 'psychic anchor'

To the Family of Patsy Mink

I read of Patsy Takemoto Mink's passing with great sadness. I grew up knowing her as a politician with values that I believe in. Although I live in Los Angeles now, having Patsy Mink in Congress had been a kind of psychic anchor back to my home state and town.

Mahalo to her who served so many years for the people of Hawai'i.

B. A. Oshiro

. . .

Inspired interns, women

For the Most Honorable Patsy Mink,

This summer has been one of the most life altering experiences for me. I had been given the opportunity to visit our nation's capitol as an educational experience for the summer internship I had been involved in for the past two years with the Office of Naval Research and the Kauai Economic Development Board.

In the duration of this trip, I and 10 other interns were allowed the very great honor of meeting with the senators and of them being Patsy Mink.

It felt so great that such an important and busy woman would take some time out of her unbelievably full schedule to meet and talk with us. We also received a gallery pass from her personally. She talked to us about how our internships were going and that we should really take advantage of opportunities like these internships.

Then she addressed me and the rest of the females in the group and told us to never let the fact that we are females get in the way of our success.

She couldn't have emphasized that more and that has led me to my persistence in my education now...and my hopes and dreams for my future career.

It has been an honor and privilege to have met her. She will be kept in my heart and my hopes and dreams for my future. On behalf of myself and the 10 other interns that have met with her, as well as our chaperones, I would like to give our deepest sympathies and condolences to her family and friends.

She has already won the election in our hearts and cannot be replaced. She has truly touched our lives.

Melissa Fujimoto
UH Manoa Student (Electrical Engineering

. . .

'Always in our hearts, always in our history'

I got a call today, a call that I didn't expect to hear. My mother, who lives on the Mainland, heard about it before I did. (I was en route to the Mainland when the news came out).

I was so heartbroken to find that the nation and our Hawai'i just recently lost one of the most influential figures of our times. I worked for Congresswoman Mink, and it gave me such pride because She stood for so many worthwhile causes and fought her own battles so that she could help pave the way for others, like myself, to achieve greatness in life.

She will never be forgotten, and I wish to send her family and staff my deepest condolences in this trying time. I only wish I could be there to deliver this message myself, but please know we will NEVER forget. We love you, Congresswoman Mink, for all you have given and all you have done.

Dionna Humphrey

. . .

A Flight Attendant's Farewell

I'll miss seeing you in the friendly skies
"Good morning, Miss Mink", I'd always say
You'd nod and smile in a warm way.
You made me feel we had family ties.

I used to tease, "Is Danny here too?"
For together you often left D.C.
Which was a double pleasure for me--
Both Hawai'i champions true.

A local girl, you drank guava juice
Which always was my pleasure to serve
To one who labored without reserve,
So many accomplishments to produce.

I wish I could have done much more
For the Honorable Lady who was the voice
For those who hitherto had no choice.
I'll miss greeting you at the aircraft door.

Although you'll not be flying with me,
In your years of service and ethics fine
Your struggle for peace and Title IX,
I'll see your lasting legacy.

by Molly Moore

. . .

A Tribute from France

We are very saddened here in France with the news of Patsy Mink's death.  God rest her sweet, strong soul.

Prudence and Larry Beck

. . .

An intern remembers

As a former intern last summer (''01) in Patsy's D.C., office, and a helping hand in this year's re-election campaign, the news of Patsy Mink's death has left me speechless. I grew to look up to and respect the woman who stood firmly in her convictions and morals.

There was a time when I honestly thought all politicians were cliché. I thought wrong, however, when it came to Patsy.

I have never met anyone quite like Patsy, and I probably never will meet anyone like her again. She was a good human being, one who went out into the world and against all odds she strived to make a difference.

Sometimes fruitless, yet she began the treacherous journey by paving the road for those behind her to complete the passage. Defending the weak, the forgotten, and the people for whom this country stands. Patsy set her heart and mind in the right direction, regardless of what people thought of her personally or politically.

She impacted the lives of the nation and the citizens of humanity with her wisdom and foresight into absolute truth, continually asking herself as she moved through issues, not what there was the country could do for her, but what she could do for her country.

Even now when I think about her passing, lumps form in my throat. And not for someone I hardly know, or someone who was merely a faceplate of an idea. No, I grieve for a woman that has given her life, her entire life, for those she didn't know...

Based simply on the fact that every day she was making a difference, striving to make the world a better place, Patsy should be honored as a hero of the state. As those who die in battle have given their lives for the country they served to protect, she has done so not with the sound of a rifle but with the command of her beliefs. Patsy Mink is a hero. You may not believe so, but as a testament of my life I will strive to emulate her wisdom as a true hero of the land of the free.

I will truly miss Patsy.

While working for her, I somehow earned her respect...and that is not something she gives away easily. She had an ability to look beyond the B.S. and see a person as they really are. On more than one occasion, Patsy has honored me; it is time I honor her.

Her memory will live on within me. As I take my journey through life I will forever think back and say to myself when faced choices, "What would Patsy do in my shoes?" Within this answer lies the truth. Steadfast and stubborn, Patsy would remain principled and never take the easy way out.

They give those responsible for representing the nation the title of honorable. Patsy has lived up to that title. And it is with this in mind I write about her. Thank you for your commitment and courage. Thank you for taking a chance on a young college student who has in turn grown and learned so much.

In honor of the Honorable Congresswoman Patsy Takemoto Mink, born on the 6th
day of December of the year 1927 to the 28th day of September 2002

With you in my heart, respectfully yours,
Earl "Cisco" Malpartida Smith

. . .

A Tribute from Thailand

Dear All;

Patsy Mink was great mentor and leader who fought for the rights of all. The state of Hawai'i and the nation have lost a pioneer and visionary. It is time for us to carry on her work and our own work as civil servants with the same spirit and energy.

Aloha and mahalo nui loa to Patsy. My deepest condolences to Patsy's family.

Eric Roeder
Health & Development Section
Emerging Social Issues Division
United Nations ESCAP
Bangkok, Thailand

. . .

Farewell, Patsy T. Mink

By the time I was able to vote, Patsy Mink was already a seasoned seventh year representative. I placed my vote on her in every election; from U.S. senator, to her run for president of the United States, mayor of the City and County of Honolulu and governor of the state of Hawai'i. Although these were unsuccessful races, Pasty Mink taught all of us well, especially the future generations of Japanese-Americans in Hawai'i.

From her speeches and actions, I learned two things: 1) Keep on trying and never give up and, 2) Success is getting what you want but happiness is liking what you have.

Truly Patsy Mink represented the hearts of the people in Hawai'i and the nation as a whole. She was a leader in life, a fighter for humanity, a scholar by nature and above all, the exemplary model of an unequivocal achiever.

I don't think anyone can replace Patsy Mink with respect to her achievements and success. They may be able to copy her but it won't be the same Patsy Mink.

Farewell, Patsy Mink, and I will try my best, along with my children, to carry on the legacy you left behind for all of us.

Gerald M. Tashima