Late Sen. Inouye honored on UH campuses

Published On: Feb 22 2013 09:18:43 PM HST

The late Sen. Daniel Inouye never wanted his name on anything.  But with his passing come the tributes.

"He would say don't name it after me.  He had a strict policy -- nothing to be named.  I think he'd probably be a little aghast," said Irene Hirano Inouye, the late senator's wife.  "In the quiet moment, he was so proud of the work and way in which he was able to bring funds back to Hawaii to make projects happen."

Inouye's widow and his son were both on hand at the University of Hawaii' at Manoa's newly named Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography Research and Education.

The senator was there himself for the groundbreaking in 2009.  He was a staunch supporter of marine science and research.

Other building and projects named after Inouye are the Allied Health Center at UH Maui, the electronics technology building at Kauai Community College and the UH Hilo College of Pharmacy.

"He was more than a partner in establishing the College of Pharmacy.  He was the driving force and Dean Mizzuto considers him the father of the College of Pharmacy in Hawaii," said UH Hilo Chancellor Don Straney.

"As we thought about Sen. Inouye, one of the things that impressed us the most was how he touches all of the islands.  Not just one island.  Not just one campus.  Not just one place, but all of them," said UH President MRC Greenwood.

Inouye's son calls Friday's experience bittersweet.  But, he says it helps the family in moving forward.

"He loved this state.  He loved the people of this state.  I have to say seeing this sort of recognition coming his way is good," said Ken Inouye, the late senator's son.  "It gets you right there."

UH names programs, facilities in Inouye's honor

Ken Inouye says this helps him in keeping a deathbed promise to his dad that his granddaughter Maggie will know her grandfather.

Maggie is three and, at this point, knows her grandpa is important because she saw him in a picture with another important figure -- Elmo.


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