From: Memoli, Michael [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Thursday, June 04, 2015 01:48 PM
To: Spector, Stephen; Barkoff, Kendra A.; Pietranton, Kelsey
Subject: VP Pool Report #3: Senate Chamber Service
Former Delaware Atty. Gen. Beau Biden is lying in honor in the Delaware Senate Chamber, a very modest space that feels about half the size of the U.S. Senate chamber. The desks have been cleared from the black-and-white checkered floor. Beau’s flag-draped casket is before the in front of the center.
Pool arrived to the second-floor viewing gallery shortly after 1 p.m. where the Biden family had assembled to the left of the rostrum from our vantage point, with the VP standing closest to his son’s casket. The family stood in front of a frame containing the Delaware Distinguished Service Medal and corresponding certificate, which was awarded today (more information below). To the right of the rostrum is a large black and white photo of Beau, his wife and two children resting on an easel.
On either side of the lectern on the front rostrum are bouquets of white flowers. Another similar arrangement is in the center of the rear rostrum. Both are draped with black bunting.
The speaking program was sent earlier. Some highlights from the top:
The Chaplain of National Guard, Colonel Ed Brandt, first offered a prayer at this “painful and somber time.” “We find ourselves walking a long a trail of tears and pray it will lead to a place of peace and comfort,” he said. While one might be tempted to focus on the bookended tragedies of Beau’s life, Brandt prayed, “Help us instead to read the volumes of victories and the tales of triumph of a life well-lived.”
Delaware Gov. Jack Markell began remarks by saying that because of the work Beau Biden did in this building, “the children of Delaware are safer for generations to come.” He said Beau “lived a life that is a model for us all.” A model husband, father and son. The VP teared up as he referred to their relationship.
“Your dad beamed with pride and love for you,” Markell said. “His attachment to his parents is now a part of history.”
“Never has a son’s love been so genuine and so deep.”
Markell continued to say that the Biden family “is Delaware’s family,” and that Beau “is a model for what a public servant should be.”
“He cared deeply about the people of Delaware. … We the people of Delaware loved Beau, if possible, even more.”
He closed: “To the Biden family we cannot begin to understand the depths of your loss. Know that we grieve with you.” The VP looked toward the ceiling as the governor concluded.
The Conspicuous Service Cross was then presented. Per the VP’s office, the cross is awarded for heroism, meritorious service and outstanding achievement. It is the highest award the State of Delaware can present. Beau served in the Delaware National Guard for nearly 12 years, starting in 2003.”
Los Angeles Times / Tribune Washington Bureau