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Treadwell Statement on Passing of Stevens


 

The shock of Ted Stevens' death in a plane crash near Dillingham is still sinking in. Alaska
has lost a visionary leader and I have lost a close and valued friend that I've known for thirtyseven
years.

As an elected leader, first in our Alaska Legislature and then as our United States Senator,
Ted Stevens never waffled on the issues or side stepped controversies. He made sure that
everyone always knew where he stood. He continually fought to make sure that Washington
dealt with Alaska's issues on Alaska's terms. When fighting for Alaska, he never ever backed
down.

Senator Stevens' career of public service spanned sixty years and exemplified both vision and
courage. It started in World War II where, as a pilot flying over the Himalayas, he was
awarded two Distinguished Flying Crosses and two Air Medals. It continued in the Alaska
Territory where he served as the United States Attorney in Fairbanks and in Washington
where he spearheaded the fight for Alaska statehood within the Eisenhower Administration as
a senior attorney in the Department of the Interior.

My last conversation with Ted, like most of my conversations with him, focused on Alaska's
future. His vision of Alaska's role in defending our nation, supplying its energy needs, and
leading the way in Arctic development was clear and uncompromising.

Ted Stevens set an example for every Alaskan to follow. I offer my condolences to his family
and the families of others who died in the crash. They are in my prayers.

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