WASHINGTON, D.C. (Sept. 6, 2016) — U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) on Tuesday introduced a House resolution (H.Res.841) honoring the late Mark Takai, who was Hawai‘i’s 1st District congressman.
Tuesday was the first day that Congress was back in session since Takai’s passing from cancer on July 20, 2016. The resolution passed the House unanimously on Tuesday evening. Gabbard also led members in a moment of silence on the House floor to honor the late Congressman and his family.
Later in the week Gabbard introduced a separate House resolution honoring the late Congressman Takai and his family, and recognizing his more than two decades of public service to Hawaiʻi and 17 years of service in the Hawaiʻi Army National Guard. She will also lead Members in a Special Order of speeches on the House floor to honor the memory of the late Congressman.
In a speech calling for a moment of silence on the House floor this evening, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said:
“Over the past few weeks, the people of Hawaiʻi and our colleagues have celebrated the life and service of our friend and colleague Congressman Mark Takai in a series of memorials, religious services and community events. Leader Pelosi led a congressional delegation, including many of the members who are standing with me today, to Hawaiʻi where we visited with Mark’s wife Sami and his children Matthew and Kaila, as well as his parents and siblings, sharing with them the memories that we made with Mark, and the impact that he had on our country during his service here in the U.S. Congress. I want to thank Mark’s family, on behalf of all of us, for opening your hearts to us, and sharing Mark with us. He touched the lives of so many people throughout his life of service—as a Pearl City High School athlete and student organizing voter registration drives, as President of Associated Students of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, representing Hawaiʻi’s 34th House District for 20 years in the State Legislature, his 17 years of service as a soldier in the Hawaiʻi Army National Guard, and most recently serving Hawaiʻi’s first congressional district.
“I had the good fortune of serving with Mark over the years, in the state legislature, in the National Guard, and here in Congress, and like you, when I think of Mark, I will always remember his ready smile, his deep laugh, and most of all, his heart of aloha. No matter where he was, or in what capacity, Mark always kept his service to Hawaiʻi’s people at the forefront of all that he did. While he served just 18 months in Congress, the impact that he made and the aloha spirit that he embodied will live on in Hawaiʻi and in these halls forever.
“As we remember our friend, our colleague, may we carry this aloha spirit in our hearts as we gather together to do the people’s work. Mr. Speaker, I ask for a moment of silence to honor the life and service of Congressman Mark Takai.”
Last month, hundreds gathered in Honolulu for a remembrance ceremony honoring Congressman Mark Takai as he laid in state at the Hawaiʻi State Capitol, including Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Members of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Hawaiʻi Congressional delegation, members of the Hawaiʻi State Legislature, and the public. Congressman Takai is one of just a few public servants who have lain in state at the Hawaiʻi Capitol, including Gov. John A Burns, U.S. Sen. Spark Matsunaga, U.S. Rep. Patsy Mink, U.S. Sen. Hiram Fong, and U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye.