Sportsmen's Act of 2012--Motion to Proceed

Floor Speech

By:  Herb Kohl
Date: Sept. 20, 2012
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. KOHL. Madam President, I rise today with great sadness to inform the Senate that Jennifer Green, a valued member of my staff and a cherished member of the Senate family, passed away last weekend after a brief illness. It is a comfort to all who knew Jennifer that she spent her last hours in a room filled with the family she cherished so deeply, but no room on Earth would have been large enough to hold all those who mourn her, who have been touched and made better by Jennifer's beautiful smile, big heart, and easy friendship. She is sorely missed in my office, throughout the Senate, and even across the country.

Jennifer worked in my office for the past 14 years, but she served the Senate for nearly a quarter century, starting with the Sergeant at Arms when she was just 20 years old. Jennifer was often the first face visitors to my office would see. She did more than just arrange Capitol tours or point them to the nearest DC attraction; she worked out a botched hotel reservation, found a glass of water to soothe an overheated toddler, listened to worries about a failing farm, a sick grandparent, or a threatened job.

Many of my constituents arrive in the office a little overwhelmed by Washington, perhaps a little angry at Congress, but after meeting Jennifer, they left knowing they had a friend here. Jennifer put a human, caring face on the Senate--a service to this institution that affected the way hundreds, and probably thousands, of Wisconsinites viewed their government.

Of course, no one, not visitor or staff, could leave the office without an update on Jennifer's family, especially her beloved mother Beatrice Spicer, her father Floyd Spicer, her brothers and sisters, and her son Lorenzo Green. She was so proud of this fine young man, as we all are. Through Jennifer, we got to watch a mischievous little boy grow to a talented and strong man serving our country as a member of the U.S. Coast Guard. She made sure everyone got a good look at the handsome--and big--framed picture she kept in her cubicle of Lorenzo in uniform.

Jennifer made us all feel as if we were part of her wonderful family. She was always the first to ask to see the picture of a new baby, quick to drive a colleague to the doctor or listen to a staffer who lost a parent, ready to swap a recipe or dissect the Redskins' latest performance. And that was not just my experience and that of my staff--Jennifer knew just about everyone who works on the Hill. We have had a steady stream of visitors stopping by the office to share memories and express their condolences. Thank you all for the comfort that has brought our staff.

Jennifer's funeral will be held in her hometown of Princeton, WV, this Saturday. I urge anyone who wants to attend or to leave a message for the family through the funeral home to contact my office for details. We will also be organizing a memorial service for Jennifer here in the Senate in the coming weeks, and we will make sure all offices get plenty of notice so that her many friends can be there.

Everywhere you look in the Capitol, there are plaques, pictures, and statues commemorating the men and women who built this great institution, but these, like all things physical, oftentimes fade or are forgotten. Jennifer touched the heart of the Senate, the people who work here, and the people who visit. Hers is a legacy and a contribution that time cannot erase.

For everyone in my office and for the entire Senate, I offer my deepest condolences to Jennifer's dear family. I hope you can find comfort in knowing of all the good she did and the joy she brought in her time here. We will all miss her profoundly and hold her in our hearts forever.

Madam President, I ask unanimous consent to have printed in the Record a copy of Jennifer's obituary.

There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in the RECORD,

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