Mr. THURMOND. Mr. President, I rise to pay tribute to Senator William S. Cohen, who is retiring at the end of the present year.
When one thinks of New England, many images come to mind. Lighthouses on rocky points, lobster and clam bakes on beaches, and men and women of few words but great wisdom. Our colleague from Maine, William S. Cohen, is just one such person, a well-educated, well-read man with an impressive background in government who has done much to benefit our Nation.
Senator Cohen began his life in public service as an assistant county attorney for Penobscot County, and later went on to serve on the staff of the Governor of Maine's State Credit Research Committee. This experience in the public sector sparked Bill's interest in a career in elected office, and it was not long before he held a succession of local positions beginning with city councilor for Bangor, followed by mayor of that same locale. Soon Bill turned his attention from the responsibilities of a local official to the challenges that a seat in the House of Representatives presents, and in 1972, he was elected to Congress. For three terms, Bill represented the people of his district faithfully, but in 1978, he felt that he could better serve his State and Nation by being a U.S. Senator, and he was elected to the first of what would be three terms.
During his tenure in this body, Senator Cohen has served on both the Armed Services Committee and the Committee on Intelligence, working hard on a number of issues of great importance to the defense of the Nation. As the chairman of the Armed Services Committee, I can say without question that Bill approaches his responsibilities with great seriousness and purposefulness of mind. We have all benefited from the contributions he has made to the security of the United States and are grateful for his efforts.
I hope that Bill leaves the Senate with fond memories of his time here and a sense of accomplishment for his efforts. Knowing Bill, upon his retirement, he is going to pursue endeavors that will be interesting and challenging, and no matter what he undertakes, I am sure that he will enjoy great success. I have been pleased to serve with my good friend from Maine, and I wish him all the best in the years ahead. END