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Former Sen. Dole to Lie In State in Capitol Rotunda

December 6, 2021 by Dan McCue
Former Sen. Dole to Lie In State in Capitol Rotunda
Lowered to half-staff in honor of former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole of Kansas, flags fly in the breeze before dawn on the National Mall with the U.S. Capitol in the background, Monday, Dec. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. David Ake)

WASHINGTON — Former Sen. Bob Dole, R- Kan., will lie in state in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda on Thursday, Dec. 9.

Dole, who died Sunday morning after a battle with lung cancer, served in the U.S. Army in World War II and was awarded two Purple Hearts for his valor.

He then went on to serve four terms in the House and nearly five terms in the Senate, where he led the Senate Republican Conference for more than a decade.

“Senator Dole was an extraordinary patriot, who devoted his entire life to serving our nation with dignity and integrity,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a written statement.  

“Putting his life on the line to defend our nation, he was awarded two Purple Hearts for his valor and sacrifice on the battlefield — and, when he came home, served as an inspiration to millions of Americans living with disabilities,” she said.  

“From the well of the House to the floor of the Senate, as a presidential candidate and as an elder statesman, he was one of the foremost advocates for our service members, veterans and military families. May it be a comfort to his loving wife, his dear daughter and all his loved ones that a grateful nation joins them in mourning during this sad time.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Dole “exemplified the greatest generation.”

“While I never had the pleasure of serving in the Senate with him, his reputation and his achievements, and most of all his character preceded him,” Schumer said. “I always admired his steadfast advocacy for veterans and for Americans with disabilities and his love for his country. Rest in peace, Senator Dole.”

“Whatever their politics, anyone who saw Bob Dole in action had to admire his character and his profound patriotism,” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said. “Those of us who were lucky to know Bob well ourselves admired him even more. A bright light of patriotic good cheer burned all the way from Bob’s teenage combat heroics through his whole career in Washington and through the years since. We look forward to honoring his life and legacy at the Capitol.”

A formal arrival and departure ceremony for Sen. Dole will be held on Thursday, though the timing has yet to be announced.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony inside the Capitol will be open to invited guests only. 

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and at https://twitter.com/DanMcCue

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