Sheila Burke, who was chief of staff to former Sen. Bob Dole from 1986 to 1996, honored the late senator at his Dec. 10 funeral by reading a poem he had also recited throughout his career.
“So, when your eulogy is being read with your life’s actions to rehash … Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?” she read from “The Dash,” a poem by Linda Ellis.
Dole, who died Dec. 5 at age 98, was a veteran wounded in war who went on to served nearly 36 years in Congress, including more than a decade as the GOP Senate leader.
At the Dec. 10 funeral at the Washington National Cathedral, Dole’s flag-draped casket was carried by a military honor guard as Dole’s wife, former North Carolina Sen. Elizabeth Dole, and daughter, Robin, looked on. Joining top leaders of Congress at the invitation-only ceremony were President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden, former Vice President Mike Pence, and former President Bill Clinton, who won a second term after beating Dole in the 1996 election. Vice President Kamala Harris and actor Tom Hanks, among other leaders and dignitaries, were also in attendance.
Dole’s casket later traveled to the World War II Memorial on the National Mall for a public “celebration of life” featuring Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the U.S. Army Band.
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