Aloha to Senator Inouye

The Japanese Crane Monument, honoring the patriotism of  Japanese Americans like Sen. Daniel Inouye.
The Japanese Crane Monument, honoring the patriotism of Japanese Americans like Sen. Daniel Inouye. (Photo: Rudi Williams)

Some Washingtonians have been a part of the District and its institutions for so long that they become living history.

This week Washington said Aloha to the second longest serving Senator in American history – Daniel Inouye. Senator Inouye passed away on Monday at Walter Reed Medical Center at the age of 88.

He had represented Hawaii in Congress since 1959, the same year Hawaii became a state. He was a decorated World War II combat veteran, Representative, Senator, and third in line to the Presidency.

And today, members of Congress paid tribute to him as he lay in state in the Capitol’s Rotunda, a rare honor for any politician.

You can pay your own tribute to this longtime Washingtonian at one of the city’s interesting but often overlooked memorials – the  Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II.

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Floodgate

It’s often said that Washington, D.C. was built on a swamp – usually in August, when the humidity in the District is unbearable. While that’s not entirely true, the Georgetown waterfront certainly looks like one right now.

The Potomac River flooded after a weekend of heavy rains, and by Monday the river had risen up to 12 feet.

Normally floodwalls are raised to protect Washington Harbour, the restaurant and office complex on the waterfront. The modern floodwalls were part of the original construction, and have been used successfully dozens of times since they were built in 1986.

But this time, a section of the wall wasn’t raised early enough. Muddy water gushed into the Harbour complex, which is conveniently shaped like a crescent bowl.

Washington Harbour Flooding
Washington Harbour flooding (Photo: Alex Greenlee, DCist)

A week later on Earth Day, the Harbour is still closed as a clean-up crew deals with the effects of Mother Nature.

Of course, this all got me thinking about historic floods in the District.

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