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friends fishing. You might imagine that JOHN had not ever seen too much of Rocky Mountain trout fishing nor the attire that accompanies such activities. I will never forget him coming from his cabin, very nattily dressed, and he said, "Milward, is that what we wear when we fish these trout?" My father said, "No, I think we need something more than that, something a little different." Off they went to enjoy a remarkable two days together.
My father loved JOHN STENNIS, and when my father was the recipient of the Milward L. Simpson Chair of Political Science at the University of Wyoming, JOHN STENNIS served as his honorary chairman, and said, "If there is anything I can do for my friend, Milward Simpson, I will do it." So it was a great affection and relationship, a true friendship. Then when I, of course, came to the Senate, JOHN STENNIS was the first to greet me. He said, "If there is anything I can do to help you or smooth your path here, let me do it." And he did.
He was more than charitable, kind, and attentive to me except, of course, when I tried to kill off the Tennessee Tombigbee Waterway. Then there was a definite strain in our relationship-momentary, fleeting. But he said, “Alan, I cannot believe that you would do that." And he was right. I did not believe I could, and did not. That great waterway is a great tribute to the personal perseverance of JOHN STENNIS.
But what he told me and I shall never forget-he said "Alan, I have been watching you." I had been here maybe 4 years at the time. "I have seen you work. I know how hard you work." He really buoyed me up. He said, "You want to remember something in the Senate." He said, "People come here, and some grow and some swell." I shall never forget the phrase. "Some grow and some swell." Indeed, we know both categories. I think I have done a little of both. But when I did swell, I was put down a peg or two, to get back to growing instead of swelling. So I want to just pay tribute to JOHN STENNIS, and I know my dear parents, both gone too, would have wanted me to pay tribute to a very dear and lovely friend, and to his memory, which will certainly be present in this Chamber for the remainder of time. He was deeply loved, a man of great stature, and truly a wonderful gentleman, truly a gentleman.
So God bless his son and his daughter who survive him. They have a wonderful heritage.
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, recently I received a letter from a Dr. Wayne M. Miller of Killeen, Texas. The letter was in reference to my recent eulogy for the late and beloved Senator JOHN CORNELIUS STENNIS.
Dr. Miller wrote that he was deeply moved by the tribute, so much so that he sat down and composed a poem after hearing it. I call attention to the letter and to the poem enclosed with it because it demonstrates not only the sensitivity and talent of the writer, but also the power and the passion which words can evoke.
In these days of often destructive, rude, and even dangerous rhetoric, let us stop and reflect on the tremendous power of our words.
Such reflection may help those of us in public life and in the media to strive to use our voices to inspire rather than to inflame.
Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that Dr. Wayne M. Miller's letter and poem be printed in the Record.
There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in Record, as follows:
U.S. Senator ROBERT C. BYRD,
Dear Senator Byrd, when I tuned in to a C-Span telecast last night, I caught the latter part of your eloquent tribute to the late Senator STENNIS. It was truly one of the greatest speeches I have ever heard. To be sure, it had the two basic ingredients of a great speech: substantive thinking, and rhetorical skills to effectively express it.
Although I am not a West Virginian, I have admired your accomplishments and the stature of your leadership. I was reared just eighty miles north of Wheeling, in a small town of Harmony, Pennsylvania. After serving as chaplain in the Air Force, I became a field director for American Red Cross-and am now retired with that organization. For the past sixteen years I have been teaching composition and rhetoric at Central Texas College. Would it be possible to have a copy of your outstanding speech? I would be ever so grateful!
I am so happy that we still have statesmen of your caliber in our nation's capital. I am enclosing a poem which I wrote after listening to you on television. It reflects, in some small measure, my responsiveness to your deeply, moving words.
Wayne M. Miller.
To the Honorable Mr. Byrd, Distinguished U.S. Senator from the State of West Virginia, after hearing the stirring tribute delivered on the floor of Congress for the late Senator JOHN STENNIS of Mississippi (1901-1995):
Your well selected words, like highly polished marble
(Uniquely Mr. Byrd's!)
Were fitted in a pyramid of architectural marvel
Arousing such a sentiment in the shaping of your thoughts
Keen emotions were unharnessed from what common birth allots And, untouted, undergirds
The daily warp and woof of our fabric of existence.
You talked about our too brief pilgrimage,
And you pricked our unsuspecting Achilles Heel
That fluttered through the crack from the raging storm
Our groping sightlessness, our straining stammering,
Of the babbling banquet hall and “much ado about nothing.”
You addressed so poignantly the human predicament
In the never ending journey "east of Eden"
Never ending, that is,
Until that special day of reckoning
When all our shattered dreams, our broken vows.
Will have their consummation
In all-glorious transformation
From the ugly to the beautiful
To the oasis of our being
The wells of spiritual refreshment
There first we saw the mirroring of our impoverished selves
And then experienced the waters that revive us
And show us the way of day.
You showed us what we are
And what we can become
In the "long journey into night"
While we suffer in our little rooms,
Waiting for the fateful end
To be transposed by the Great Composer
From our discords into harmonies,
Rejoicing with the Children of the Light.
Wayne Meredith Miller, 1995 Nominee for Poet of the Year.
Proceedings in the House
MONDAY, May 1, 1995.
MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE
A message from the Senate by Mr. Lundregan, one of its clerks, announced that the Senate had passed a resolution of the following title, in which the concurrence of the House is requested:
S. RES. 111
Resolved, That the Senate has heard with profound sorrow and deep regret the announcement of the death of the Honorable JOHN C. STENNIS, late a Senator from the State of Mississippi.
Resolved, That the Secretary communicate these resolutions to the House of Representatives and transmit an enrolled copy thereof to the family of the deceased.
Resolved, That when the Senate recesses today, it recess as a further mark of respect to the memory of the deceased Senator.
TUESDAY, May 2, 1995.
The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the gentleman from Mississippi (Mr. Montgomery) is recognized for 5 minutes.
Mr. MONTGOMERY. Mr. Speaker, former Mississippi Senator JOHN C. STENNIS died on April 23 at the age of 93. He retired from the Senate in 1989. In the passage of time, we sometimes forget events and accomplishments, but we will not forget Senator STENNIS.
History will record Senator STENNIS as one of the great statesmen of the 20th century. He was so well respected in Washington as a southern gentleman and as a man of unquestioned integrity and character. But along with his courtly southern manner, Senator STENNIS was an effective leader who was tough when it came to maintaining a strong national defense and in looking out for his native state.