Barbara and I are deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of our dear friends Senator John Tower and his daughter Marian. America has lost a great man and distinguished statesman who dedicated his life to public service. The news of the plane crash today outside Brunswick, GA, deepens the sorrow and sense of loss we have so recently felt with the death of Senator John Heinz.
John Tower and I became friends 30 years ago. We have remained close friends to this day. Senator Tower's years of public service greatly strengthened the course of our national security and foreign policy, and his advocacy for a strong defense helped to lay the groundwork for the many recent successes we have witnessed in our ability to respond to international conflicts.
He served the people of Texas and the Nation with honor and distinction for over 30 years. Many Presidents benefited from his experience and counsel since his arrival in the Senate in 1961. I am among those who will sorely miss his advice, especially in the fields of arms control, national security, and intelligence.
He was a friend, a leader, and a great Senator. Our sympathy and prayers go out to his surviving family members, Penny and Jeanne. Barbara and I join all Americans in mourning his death, and our hearts go out to the families of those who lost loved ones in this tragic accident.
Barbara and I were also saddened to learn of the death of U.S. astronaut Manley Lanier ``Sonny'' Carter, Jr. He served the Nation well, and his experience will be sorely missed.