Senator Byrd: Leader and Friend

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Much has been said this week about Senator Robert C. Byrd's impact in the world of politics, but now we get a closer look at his life outside the U.S. Senate.

Dale Lowther is the former chairman of the Wood County Democratic Executive Committee, and was a close friend to Senator Byrd.

"Taking his time to talk to an average West Virginian; it just makes you feel great," Lowther said about the senator.

At the age of fourteen, Lowther met Byrd, who took him under his wing and became a close family friend.

"My father and Senator Byrd played music together. Senator Byrd was just down to earth. He'd take his fiddle and go play it," Lowther said.

And music was just one of his many talents.

"He was a walking dictionary. He could quote the scripture, he could quote poetry, he put humor into it. He loved people," he said.

Especially people in the Mountain State. It's that love that reminds Lowther of a story involving sitting in the senator's chair.

"I said 'Well senator, one thing interesting about that chair; it's not big enough for me but it's just right for you, so you're gonna have to remain there.' and his comment was, with his sense of humor, 'Well Dale, I'll stay there as long as you want me to and the people of West Virginia want me to.'"

And that's just what he did. Now the hope is that his influence will live on.

"I hope that as time goes on, young people will learn about Senator Byrd and that he will have an influence on their lives like he has mine," Lowther said.

Celebrating the life of a man who touched the lives of countless others.

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