Former State Senator Remembers Ted Kennedy

Here in Nebraska, those who had the chance to meet Ted Kennedy are remembering his legacy and mourning the loss.

Former Nebraska State Senator DiAnna Schimek and her husband, Herb, both met Ted Kennedy.

They call him a political icon and legend, saying he was 'awe inspiring.'

DiAnna met him while serving on the Democratic National Committee.

Herb, an education lobbyist, has a more personal story.and the picture to prove it.

In 1969, on a tour of the Senate floor, he took a seat at Ted Kennedy's desk not knowing he'd soon be shaking the senator's hand.

He says Ted Kennedy came up behind him and said, 'now, who's that in my seat?'

In 1962, at the ripe age of 30, Ted Kennedy took over as Massachusetts senator for his brother John F. Kennedy.

Herb says, “He had the unique ability to cross party lines and have people to sit down and compromise.”

He served or nearly 50 years.  Using classic Kennedy charisma and political prowess, the liberal lion pushed to end the drafts for civil rights, voting rights, and the Americans With Disabilities Act among so many more.

DiAnna praises Kennedy saying, “he was a legend in his own time and will be even ore so as time goes by.  He really did some tremendous things for our country.”

She wonders what tremendous things he could still have done, especially with is life-long dream of universal health care.  “The work goes on, the cause endures and the dream shall never die.”

Those words echo as the country mourns the man, knowing his seat will be hard to fill.

When it actually comes to filling Ted Kennedy's Massachusetts senate seat, state law requires a special election for within 160 days.

For now, politicians on both side of the aisle and people all across the nation are remembering one of America's greatest politicians.