At a press conference to announce his budget, Governor Neil Abercrombie delivered a tearful response to learning of the passing of Sen. Inouye.
"The Senator gave everything. He knew the true meaning of 'Go for Broke.'He left us with a legacy of honor and service to the people of Hawaii, to the people of this nation, without parallel,"Gov. Abercrombie said.
"The Senator recently made clear to me his love and affection for us all. He said: 'I represented the people of Hawaii and this nation honestly and to the best of my ability. I think I did okay.'I'm sure we all believe he did okay.
"Our responsibility is to not just carry on but carry through on his total devotion and commitment to Hawaii and its values. Our thoughts, hearts and deepest aloha go out to his wife, Irene; son, Ken; and the entire Inouye family."
Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle provided these words on Inouye's passing. "I send my sincere condolences to Senator Inouye's family and hope to speak with his wife Irene about how to best respect the senator's wishes and memory. I will be in Washington, DC tomorrow and expect to comment further on Wednesday."
Big Island Mayor Billy Kenoi interned for the Senator in 1992 and had this to say,
"Beyond the titles, beyond the power and the influence, what most stands out is his thoughtfulness, his kindness and how he treated everyone with respect and aloha," Mayor Kenoi said. "I will never forget that lesson."
Hawaii State Senate President Shan Tsutsui added, "Today, we have lost a true American hero. Senator Dan Inouye served the people of Hawaii and our country with great dignity and honor. A true statesman, his lifelong work has left an indelible mark on Hawaii and he leaves behind a legacy that we will never forget. We express our heartfelt condolences to the Inouye ohana and our thoughts and prayers are with them."
Even Republicans felt the sway of Sen. Inouye. "Today, we have lost a true American hero," said State Senate Minority Leader Sam Slom. "Senator Dan Inouye served the people of Hawaii and our country with great dignity and honor. A true statesman, his lifelong work has left an indelible mark on Hawaii and he leaves behind a legacy that we will never forget. We express our heartfelt condolences to the Inouye ohana and our thoughts and prayers are with them."
Sen. Inouye, a highly decorated WWII veteran and an advocate towards defense and veteran spending, had a tremendous following amongst the military community.
Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, expressed his condolences on Inouye's passing. "Today is a truly sad day for U.S. Pacific Command, the State of Hawaii, and all of us who have valued our relationship and time spent with Senator Inouye over the many years. Sen. Inouye's dedication to Hawaii, its men and women in uniform, and to this great Nation was exceptional and set a true example of devotion to Country that all would do good to follow. We have lost a great friend, a true national hero, a tireless public servant and an irreplaceable American. We will all miss him."
Members of the American Civili Liberties Union contributed their condolences, highlighting Inouye's tireless efforts towards equality. "Sen. Inouye was a champion of civil rights and civil liberties. He was a decorated soldier, who embodied passionate patriotism in his defense of American values in the United States Senate."
"Some of his notable contributions to civil liberties include support for women's rights and equal pay, support for the preservation of the Voting Rights Act, and support for civil rights laws that included persons with disabilities."