Members of Congress Who Die in Office: Historic and Current Practices
Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress
Since 1973, 79 Members of Congress—67 Representatives, and 12 Senators—have died in office.
When a sitting Member dies, the House and Senate carry out a number of actions based on
chamber rules, statutes, and longstanding practices. Some observances, such as adjourning briefly
as a mark of respect to the deceased, appointing Member delegations to attend funerals of
deceased colleagues, or paying the costs of a funeral from public funds, were initially observed in
the earliest Congresses, or predate the national legislature established under the Constitution. It
appears that contemporary congressional response to the death of a sitting Member is affected by
a number of external factors including the following: circumstances of the Member’s death,
preferences of the deceased Member or the Member’s family regarding funeral services, whether
Congress is in session when the Member dies, pending congressional business at the time of the
Member’s death, and events external to Congress at the time.
Congressional response to the death of a sitting Member could be characterized as a broad set of
actions that are determined in detail at or around the time of the death, in response to a wide array
of factors. Broadly, these actions fall into five categories, including announcement or
acknowledgment on the House or Senate floor; consideration of resolutions of condolence; a
funeral or other rites; issues related to the deceased Member’s office, staff, and survivor benefits;
and publication of memorials.
This report, which will be updated as events warrant, is one of several CRS products focusing on
various aspects of congressional operations and administration. Others include CRS Report
RL30064, Congressional Salaries and Allowances, by Ida A. Brudnick; CRS Report RL34619,
Use of the Capitol Rotunda and Capitol Grounds: Concurrent Resolutions, 101st to 110th
Congress, by Matthew Eric Glassman and Jacob R. Straus; and CRS Report RL34545,
Congressional Staff: Duties and Functions of Selected Positions, by R. Eric Petersen.
Background and Context.................................................................................................................1
Floor Announcement or Acknowledgment of a Member’s Death...................................................3
Representa ti ve s-Elect .......................................................................................................... 5
Resolutions of Condolence..............................................................................................................7
Funeral and Disposition of Remains...............................................................................................9
Deceased Member’s Office, Staff, and Survivor Benefits.............................................................12
Publication of Memorials..............................................................................................................14
Table 1. Members of the House Who Died in Office, and Resolutions of Condolence
Adopted in the House and Senate, 1973-2008..........................................................................15
Table 2. Senators Who Died in Office, And Resolutions of Condolence Adopted in the
Senate and House, 1978-2007....................................................................................................18
Author Contact Information..........................................................................................................19
Since 1987, 79 Members of Congress—67 Representatives and 12 Senators—have died in office.
When a sitting Member dies, the House and Senate carry out a number of actions based on
chamber rules, statutes, and longstanding practices. Some congressional practices related to the
death of a sitting Member predate the national legislature established by the Constitution. On
October 23, 1775, the Continental Congress, sitting in Philadelphia, was informed that Peyton
Randolph, a Delegate from Virginia and president of the Continental Congress, “suddenly
departed this life” the day before, and resolved that its members would “attend his funeral as
mourners, with a crape round their left arm,” and “continue in Mourning for the space of one
month.” A committee of three Delegates was appointed to “superintend the funeral” and the 1
Reverend Jacob Duché, rector of St. Peter’s Episcopal and Christ Churches was requested to 2
“prepare a proper discourse to be delivered at the funeral.”
During the First Congress (1789-1791), the first instances of the death of a sitting Senator and
Representative occurred. Senator William Grayson of Virginia died on March 12, 1790. No direct 3
mention of the event is recorded in the Senate Journal or the Annals of Congress. On June 1,
1790, the House was informed of the death of Representative Theodorick Bland of Virginia. The
House ordered the Virginia delegation to “be a committee to superintend the funeral, and that the
House attend the same.” The next day, it was ordered that the House Members go into mourning 4
for one month, “by the usual method of wearing crape around the left arm.”
See University of Pennsylvania, “Penn in the 18 Century: Jacob Duché (1737-1798),” website at
2 Quotes taken from U.S. Continental Congress, Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789, 34 vols.
(Washington: GPO, 1905), vol. 3, pp. 302-303.
3 An indirect mention of Senator Grayson’s demise occurred at the beginning of the third session of the First Congress
on December 6, 1790. Senator John Walker was appointed to the seat held by Senator Grayson by the governor of
Virginia and served in the Senate from March 31 to November 9, 1790 (taking his seat in the chamber on April 26),
when Senator James Monroe was elected to the seat by the Virginia legislature. When Senator Walker took his seat on
the first day of the third session, the Journal noted that he had come to the Senate in place of Senator Grayson. See st
Senate Journal, 1 Cong., 2nd sess., April 26, 1790 (Washington: Gales and Seaton, 1820), p. 134; Ibid., 1st Cong., 3rd
sess., December 6, 1790, p. 215; and Annals of the Congress of the United States, vol. II, December 6, 1790
(Washington: Gales and Seaton, 1834), p. 1770. The absence of a record of direct official recognition of Senator
Grayson’s death does not conclusively demonstrate that the Senate took no action. During the early years of the
republic, substantially verbatim records of congressional proceedings were not required. Available records are limited,
official minutes of measures considered and formal actions taken by the chamber in the Journal of each chamber.
Moreover, the Senate, until 1794, met in secret. Accordingly, while it appears that the Senate adopted no resolution in
response to Senator Grayson’s death, it cannot be determined whether individual Senators spoke on the matter, or
whether the chamber marked the occasion with a moment of silence or other tribute. The first public, direct
acknowledgment by the Senate of the death of one of its Members appears to have occurred on March 19, 1806, the
day after the death of Senator James Jackson of Georgia. In response, the Senate adopted resolutions appointing a
committee to superintend the funeral, attend the funeral, notify the House, observe 30 days of mourning, and wear
crape. See Senate Journal, 9th Cong., 2nd sess., March 19, 1806 (Washington: Gales and Seaton, 1821), p. 60. A
searchable version of the Senate Journal entries for the first 43 Congresses is available at
4 Asher C. Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents of the House of Representatives of the United States, vol. V (Washington: GPO,
1907), p. 1039.
In the 19th century, Congress adopted the practice of paying some of the expenses of funeral 56
services for sitting Members. Services were sometimes held in the House or Senate chamber.
On February 27, 1838, for example, funeral services for Representative Jonathan Cilley of Maine 7
were held in the Hall of the House, with the House and Senate in attendance. When services or
interment were not held in Washington, DC, it was the practice of both chambers to appoint a
committee of Members to escort the remains of a deceased colleague to their final destination. On
June 28, 1847, the House and Senate each voted to accompany the remains of Senator John
Fairfield of Maine “from his house to the depot, where they were to be delivered to” 8st
Representative Franklin Clark, who accompanied them to Maine. By the 41 Congress (1869-
1871), it had “for a long time been a custom to appoint a joint committee to attend the remains of
a deceased Senator or Member to his home, as in the instance of Senator Daniel S. Morton, of 9
Minnesota, on July 14, 1870.”
In contemporary times, chamber rules and statutes set out some of the congressional response to 10
the death of a sitting Member, and former Members who served as Speaker. Evidence from the
Senate Journal, House precedents, and other historical documents shows that some long-standing
observances, such as adjourning briefly as a mark of respect to the deceased, appointing Member
delegations to attend funerals of deceased colleagues, or paying the costs of a funeral from public
funds, may be employed. Other customs, such as wearing crape, holding services in the House or 11
Senate chambers, or appointing Members to escort the body back to the home state, have not
been observed for at least several decades. In addition to some evolutionary changes in
institutional patterns, it appears that contemporary congressional response is affected by a number
of external factors including the following:
Funeral services were held for 31 deceased Representatives who died in office between 1820 and 1940. See Clerk of
the House website, “Funerals in the House Chamber,” at http://clerk.house.gov/art_history/house_history/funerals.html.
6 Senate documents indicate that between 1812 and 1959, funeral services were held in the Senate chamber for 40
people, including Vice President George Clinton (1812), 35 Senators who died in office, and four former Senators. See
“Funerals Held in the Senate Chamber,” retrieved from the Senate Library, and available from the authors upon
7 Following the services, a funeral procession accompanied the body of Representative Cilley to a place of interment.
The procession consisted of the chaplains of the House and Senate; a seven-Member House committee of
arrangements; six Representatives appointed as pallbearers; family and friends of the deceased; Representatives and
Senators from Maine as mourners; the House Sergeant at Arms; the Members of the House, preceded by the Speaker
and the Clerk; the Senate Sergeant at Arms; the Senate, preceded by the Vice President and the Secretary of the Senate;
President Martin Van Buren; executive branch department secretaries; “judges of the Supreme Court and its officers;”
foreign ministers; and citizens and strangers, See Congressional Globe, vol. 6, February 26, 1838 (Washington: Blair
and Rives, 1838), p. 200. While the House and Senate typically voted to attend services held in Washington, DC, for a
sitting Member, the presence of officials from the executive and judicial branches and diplomatic corps appears to be
atypical. A partial explanation may be found in the circumstances of Representative Cilley’s death. Representative
Cilley was killed in a duel with Representative William J. Graves of Kentucky on February 24, 1838. Congress
subsequently passed legislation prohibiting the giving or accepting, within the District of Columbia, of challenges to a
duel (Chap. XXX, Feb 20, 1839, 5 Stat. 318). See Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774-Present
website at http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=C000395 and
8 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1039.
9 Ibid., p. 1040.
10 The death of former Members of either chamber may or may not be acknowledged by a resolution of condolence or
floor statements in the House or Senate.
11 Ceremonies to mark the passing of a sitting Member are sometimes held elsewhere in the Capitol. Most recently, a
memorial service was held in Statuary Hall of the Capitol for Representative Robert Matsui of California, January 5,
• circumstances of the Member’s death;
• preferences of the deceased Member, or the Member’s family, regarding funeral
• whether Congress is in session when the Member dies;
• pending congressional business at the time of the Member’s death; and
• events external to Congress.
Consequently, it appears that congressional response to the death of a sitting Member could be
characterized as a set of actions that are determined in detail at or around the time of the death, in
response to an array of factors. Generally, these actions fall into five categories:
• Floor Announcement or Acknowledgment;
• Resolution of Condolence;
• Deceased Member’s Office, Staff, and Survivor Benefits; and
• Publication of Memorials.
Congressional recognition of the death of a sitting Member occurs principally on the floor of the
chamber in which the deceased served. Specific actions are contingent on whether Congress is in 12
session, the business pending before the chamber, and the circumstances of the Member’s death.
If the House is in session, the death of a sitting Member is typically announced on the floor. No
specific protocol has been identified, but notices of death have typically been made by the
Speaker, by a Member who indicates that they have been informed by House leaders of the death
of a colleague, or by a Member from the decedent’s state delegation. Depending on floor
business, the House may continue with pending matters, suspend business for special order
speeches and other memorials to the deceased Member, or immediately adjourn for the day in 13
honor of the decedent.
In addition to congressional activity related to the death of a sitting Member or former Speaker, 4 U.S.C. 7 provides
that the American flag be flown at half staff for a former Speaker of the House for 10 days from the day of his or her
death, and on the day of death and the following day for a Member of Congress. In practice, the flag is typically flown
at half staff on the Capitol and congressional buildings in Washington, DC, from the day of death until the funeral of
the deceased Member.
13 Regardless of when the House adjourns, on the day the death of a Member is acknowledged, it adjourns “as a further
mark of respect to the memory” of the decedent. See, e.g., Congressional Record, daily edition, April 23, 2007, p. H
3775; and October 9, 2007, p. H11390.
The death of Representative Julia May Carson of Indiana, who died on December 15, 2007, was
acknowledged when the House met on December 17. In his opening prayer, the Reverend Daniel 14
P. Coughlin, chaplain of the House, noted Representative Carson’s demise. A short time later,
Representative Dan Burton, dean of the Indiana delegation, was recognized to speak, and yielded
to Representative Peter Visclosky of Indiana, who informed the House of Representative Carson’s
passing, and announced a special order for tributes to her. Following brief remarks by
Representative Burton, Representative Visclosky asked for and was granted a moment of silence 15
in Representative Carson’s memory.
Other contemporary examples of the House acknowledging the death of a sitting Member include
• No formal announcement regarding the death of Representative Jo Ann Davis of
Virginia, who died Saturday, October 6, 2007, was made in the House when the
chamber next met on October 9, and no moment of silence was observed. During
the prayer at the beginning of the session, the chaplain mentioned Representative 16
Davis, and some Members commented through one minute speeches. A 17
resolution of condolence was considered and adopted later in the day.
Following the death of Representative Paul E. Gillmor of Ohio on September 5, 2007,
Representative John Boehner, the Republican leader, received unanimous consent to speak out of 18
order to inform the chamber. Later in the day, Representative Ralph Regula of Ohio rose to
announce his intention to introduce a “resolution of bereavement” and asked that the House rise 19
for a moment of silence.
• The death of Representative Juanita Millender-McDonald of California, on April
who asked for a moment of silence. Following brief consideration of other
matters, the House moved to consideration and adoption of a resolution of 20
condolence before adjourning.
• An announcement of the death of Representative Charles W. Norwood Jr. of
Georgia, who died on February 13, 2007, after a long illness, was made to the
House in the middle of debate on H.Con.Res. 63, regarding President George W. 21
Bush’s decision to send additional military personnel to Iraq. On February 13,
debate on the concurrent resolution was briefly interrupted twice to acknowledge
Representative Norwood’s death. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida,
“Prayer,” Congressional Record, daily edition, December 17, 2007, p. H15472.
15 “Moment of Silence in Memory of the Honorable Julia Carson, Member of Congress,” Congressional Record, daily
edition, December 17, 2007, p. H15514.
16 Congressional Record, daily edition, October 9, 2007, p. H11323.
17 Congressional Record, daily edition, October 9, 2007, pp. H 11369-H11390.
18 “Announcing the Passing of Congressman Paul E. Gillmor,” Congressional Record, daily edition, September 5,
2007, p. H10103.
19 “Moment of Silence in Memory of the Late Honorable Paul E. Gillmor,” Congressional Record, daily edition,
September 5, 2007, p. H10112.
20 Congressional Record, daily edition, April 23, 2007, pp. H3742-H3775.
21 H.Con.Res. 63, 110th Congress, Disapproving of the decision of the President announced on January 10, 2007, to
deploy more than 20,000 additional United States combat troops to Iraq, introduced February 12, 2007.
who was recognized to speak on the pending resolution, announced 22
Representative Norwood’s death. A short time later, Representative John
Nathan Deal of Georgia came to the floor on behalf of the Georgia delegation to 23
announce Representative Norwood’s death and to ask for a moment of silence.
Pursuant to House Rule XX, clause 5(d), the Speaker or Speaker pro tempore typically announces
a revised whole number of the House in light of the passing of a Representative soon after the 24
House acknowledges the Member’s passing.
When a Member of the House dies during an extended period of congressional recess or
adjournment, it has been the practice of the House since at least 1826 to make an announcement 25
on the next day the chamber convened. This approach was taken when Representative Floyd
Spence of South Carolina died on August 16, 2001. When the House reconvened on September 5,
Speaker Dennis Hastert addressed the House to announce Representative Spence’s death, that a
funeral had been held, that Representative John Spratt would later offer a resolution of 26
condolence, and that a special order in tribute to Representative Spence would be held in the
Representatives-elect who died between their election and the convening of Congress have been
acknowledged by the House. In 1833, news of the death of Representative-elect Thomas D.
Singleton of South Carolina, while traveling to take his seat in Washington, DC, was announced.
Representative Henry L. Pinckney of South Carolina, noting that while Mr. Singleton had not
appeared and qualified, “it was fitting, and according to the usages of the House, to pay him the
usual observances of respect.” Following the adoption of a resolution of condolence,
Representative Pinckney “moved an adjournment of the House, saying that he believed such to be 27
the custom in these cases.”
According to House precedents and more recent practice, recognizing deceased Representatives-th28
elect in a manner similar to that of sitting Members also occurred in the 20 century. On the first th
day of the 98 Congress (1983-1984), the House took official notice of the death of
Representative-elect Jack Swigert through an announcement of his passing by the Sergeant at
Arms. Later in the day, the House adopted a resolution of condolence and appointed five 29
Members to attend Mr. Swigert’s funeral.
“Announcing the Passing of the Honorable Charlie Norwood,” Congressional Record, daily edition, February 13,
2007, pp. H1500-H1501.
23 “Moment of Silence Observed in Memory of the Honorable Charlie Norwood,” Congressional Record, daily edition,
February 13, 2007, p. H1502.
24 See, e.g., Congressional Record, daily edition, December 17, 2007, p. H15472; and April 23, 2007, p. H3742.
25 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1042.
26 “In Honor of Our Great Colleagues,” Congressional Record, September 5, 2001, p. 16381. It appears that the special
order was not held, possibly due in part to the increase in congressional activity in the aftermath of the September 11,
27 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1045.
28 See Ibid.; and Clarence Cannon, Cannon’s Precedents of the House of Representatives of the United States, vol. VIII
(Washington: GPO, 1935), p. 928.
29 “Announcements of the Sergeant at Arms,” Congressional Record, vol. 135, Jan 3, 1983, p. 30; H.Res. 14, 98th
In addition to a resolution of condolence, discussed below, there may be other tributes to the
deceased Member offered on the floor of the House. These may include one minute speeches by
individual Members, or special orders dedicated to the memory of the deceased Member. Either
of these approaches would be subject to House rules regarding non-legislative debate in the 30
When the Senate is in session, news of the passing of a sitting Senator is often widely known
when the chamber meets. Consequently, a formal floor announcement is generally not made. The
death of a sitting Senator is typically acknowledged on the Senate floor in prayers offered by the
chaplain, through tributes offered by other Senators, and consideration of a resolution of
condolence. The Senate may continue with other business, or adjourn after acknowledging a
Senator’s demise. When it does adjourn, the chamber typically does so as a mark of further
respect to the late Senator. Exceptions to this practice arise when news of the death of a Senator
reaches the Senate while it is meeting. In those circumstances, including the deaths of Senator
Paul Coverdell of Georgia on July 18, 2000, and Senator Quentin Burdick of North Dakota on 31
September 8, 1992, the majority leader made an announcement.
Senator Craig Thomas of Wyoming died on June 4, 2007. No formal announcement of his passing
was made in the Senate. When the Senate met the next day, the chaplain mentioned Senator
Thomas in the opening prayer. Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, subsequently
offered a tribute, followed by Majority Leader Harry Reid, who also offered a tribute, and who
asked for unanimous consent to postpone previously scheduled Senate activity to later in the day
so “people have the opportunity to come and speak about” Senator Thomas. Senator Reid then 32
asked for a moment of silence in recognition of Senator Thomas. After several Senators offered
tributes, the Senate resumed planned business before adopting a resolution of condolence and 33
adjourning “as a mark of further respect to the memory of” Senator Thomas.
Similar exercises were carried out to honor Senator Paul Wellstone of Minnesota, who died in an 34
aircraft accident while campaigning for reelection on October 27, 2002. When the Senate met
October 28, it observed a moment of silence, adopted a resolution of condolence, and adjourned
Congress, “A Resolution That the House Adjourn as a Mark of Respect to the Memory of the Honorable Jack Swigert,
Representative-elect from the State of Colorado,” adopted January 3, 1983; and “The Late Honorable Jack Swigert,”
Congressional Record, vol. 135, January 3, 1983, p. 54.
30 For further information, see CRS Report RS21174, Special Order Speeches and Other Forms of Non-Legislative
Debate in the House, by Betsy Palmer; and CRS Report RL30136, Special Order Speeches: Current House Practices,
by Judy Schneider.
31 “The Death of Senator Paul Coverdell, of Georgia,” Congressional Record, vol. 146, July 18, 2000, p. 15121; and
“Death of Senator Quentin N. Burdick,” Congressional Record, vol. 138, September 8, 1992, p. 23751.
32 Congressional Record, daily edition, June 5, 2007, pp. S7017-S7018, quote, p. 7018.
33 Congressional Record, daily edition, June 5, 2007, p. S7096.
34 Senator Wellstone’s wife and daughter, along with three campaign aides and two pilots, were also killed in the
as a further mark of respect to Senator Wellstone’s memory.35 On November 12, several Senators 36
Since 1807, Senators who have died during periods of recess or adjournment have been 37
acknowledged when the Senate reconvened. The most recent sitting Senator to die during a
recess was Senator John East of North Carolina, who died by suicide on June 29, 1986. When the
Senate met on July 14, Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina announced Senator East’s demise
and offered a tribute. Other Senators also offered tributes, and the Senate adopted a resolution of 38
The first resolution of mourning for a sitting Senator appears to have been adopted in 1806.
Although the House had taken other, ad hoc actions in the early years of the nation, formal
resolutions adopted in response to the death of a sitting Member date back at least to 1827. House
precedents and the Senate Journal typically refer to resolutions designating the use of crape or
other badges of mourning, and authorizing Members to attend funeral services. In the House it
was typical to adjourn as a mark of respect for the deceased Member. House resolutions that
included expressions of condolences to the family of the deceased Member appear to have been 39
considered in some cases dating to 1864, before becoming more routine beginning around 1899.
In current practice, the House considers a resolution expressing its condolences to the family of a
deceased Member. If the House is in session, a resolution is typically introduced within a day of
the Member’s passing by the senior Member of the state delegation in which the deceased
Member served. One hour of debate is allotted for consideration of the measure, equally divided
between majority and minority, although in some cases, that time is not used if another memorial 40
is planned under special orders at a later date. At the conclusion of debate the resolution of 41
condolence is typically adopted by voice vote or unanimous consent. In the text of the
resolution, the House notes the following:
Congressional Record, vol. 148, October 28. 2002, pp. 21241-21246, 21250.
36 Congressional Record, vol. 148, November 12, 2002, pp. 21288-21309.
37 Soon after convening for the 1st session of the 10th Congress, the Senate adopted resolutions of mourning in honor of
Senator Abraham Baldwin of Georgia, who died on March 4, 1807, and Senator Uriah Tracy of Connecticut, who died
on July 19, 1807. Senate Journal, 10th Cong, 1st sess., November 2, 1807 (Washington: Gales and Seaton, 1821), pp.
38 Congressional Record, vol. 132, Jul. 14, 1986, pp. 16328-16335, 16378.
39 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, pp. 1040-1042, 1054, 1055.
40 See, e.g., “Expressing Sorrow of the House at the Death of the Honorable George E. Brown, Jr., Member of
Congress from the State of California,” Congressional Record, vol. 145, July 16, 1999, pp. 16483-16484.
41 See, e.g., “Expressing Sorrow of the House at the Death of the Hon. Sonny Bono, Representative from the State of
California,” Congressional Record, vol. 144, January 27, 1998, pp. 81-91; and “Expressing Sorrow of the House at the
Death of the Hon. Norman Sisisky, Representative from the Commonwealth of Virginia,” Congressional Record, vol.
147, March 29, 2001, pp. 4982-4994.
• “The House has heard with profound sorrow of the death of the Honorable
________, a Representative/Delegate/Resident Commissioner from ______”
• the Clerk of the House communicates these Resolutions to the Senate and
transmits a copy to the family of the deceased; and
• upon adjournment, the House “adjourn as a further mark of respect to the 42
memory of the deceased.”
In addition, the House sometimes authorizes and directs the House Sergeant at Arms to “take such
steps as may be necessary for carrying out the provisions of these resolutions and that the 43
necessary expenses in connection therewith be paid out of the contingent fund of the House,” or
to appoint “a committee of such Members of the House as the Speaker may designate, together 44
with such Members of the Senate as may be joined, be appointed to attend the funeral.”
When a Representative dies, the Senate sometimes adopts a resolution of condolence. Table 1
summarizes House and Senate resolutions adopted to mark the passing of a sitting Representative
In current practice, the Senate typically considers a resolution expressing its condolences to the
family of a deceased Senator and to the citizens of the state the Senator represented. The measure
may be introduced by the majority leader, the minority leader, or the surviving Senator from the
state the deceased Senator represented. All living, sitting Senators are listed as cosponsors. There
may follow a period of debate, particularly if other tributes have not already been offered or a
future tribute is scheduled. At the conclusion of debate, the resolution of condolence is typically 45
adopted by unanimous consent. In the text of the resolution, the Senate typically includes a
preamble containing various milestones of the late Senator’s public career, and resolves that
• “The United States Senate has heard with profound sorrow and deep regret the
announcement of the death of the Honorable _____, a Senator from the State of
• “the Secretary of the Senate shall communicate this resolution to the House of
Representatives and transmit an enrolled copy thereof to the family of Senator
See, e.g., H.Res. 338, 105 Congress, Expressing the Condolences of the House on the Death of the Honorable
Sonny Bono, a Representative from the State of California, adopted January 27, 1998; and H.Res. 157, 107th Congress,
Expressing the Condolences of the House of Representatives on the Death of the Honorable John Joseph Moakley, a
Representative from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, adopted June 6, 2001.
43 See, e.g., H.Res. 252, 106th Congress, Expressing the Condolences of the House on the Death of the Honorable
George E. Brown, Jr., adopted July 16, 1999; and H.Res. 107, 107th Congress, Expressing the Condolences of the
House of Representatives on the Death of the Honorable Norman Sisisky, a Representative from the Commonwealth of
Virginia, adopted March 29, 2001. This clause may not be necessary since the Sergeant at Arms has statutory authority
to assist with funeral preparations. See Funeral section, below.
44 See, e.g., H.Res. 159, 110th Congress, Expressing the Condolences of the House of Representatives on the Death of
the Honorable Charlie Norwood, a Representative of the State of Georgia, adopted February 4, 2007.
45 See, e.g., S.Res. 354, 107th Congress, A resolution relative to the death of Paul Wellstone, a Senator from the State of
Minnesota, adopted October 28, 2002; and S.Res. 338, 106th Congress, A resolution relative to the death of the
Honorable Paul Coverdell, a Senator from the State of Georgia, adopted July 1, 2000.
• “when the Senate adjourns today, it shall stand adjourned as a further mark of 46
respect to the memory of Senator _____.”
In addition to observances of record, a deceased Senator’s desk in the Senate chamber may be 47
draped in black for a brief period. Additionally, upon the death of a sitting Senator, the majority
leader and minority leader may permit a display of flowers to be placed upon the desk of a 48
deceased Senator on the day set aside for eulogies.
When a Senator dies, the House sometimes adopts a resolution of condolence. Table 2
summarizes Senate and House resolutions adopted to mark the passing of a sitting Senator since
Since the earliest days of the republic, some of the expenses of holding funerals of sitting
Members, or the procurement of cemetery monuments, have been defrayed in part from public
funds. From 1789-1801, it appears that the travel allowances of deceased Members of the House
were applied to funeral costs. When Delegate Narsworthy Hunter of Mississippi Territory died on
March 11, 1802, a week after the Seventh Congress (1801-1803) convened, the practice of 49
providing a funeral at public expense was first adopted by the House. On June 5, 1809, the
Senate adopted a resolution “that a sum not exceeding one hundred and fifty dollars be applied
out of the contingent fund for placing a neat slab or monument with a suitable inscription” over 50
the tomb of Senator Francis Malbone of Rhode Island, who died on March 4. On June 15, 1809,
the Senate authorized the secretary of the Senate to pay the expenses of Senator Malbone’s 51
funeral, upon allowance and certification “by the committee of arrangement.”
Paying for Member funerals with public funds has not been without controversy. In an 1820
remembrance of Delegate Hunter’s funeral, Representative John Randolph of Virginia noted that 52
since 1802, the practice of funding Member funerals had been “observed and abused.” In 1848,
the subject came up twice within a few weeks. Contrary to precedent, the tenor of those
discussions was that it was unusual to pay the expenses of a Member’s funeral except when it was
held in Washington, DC, and that the cost of such ceremonies amounted to an average of 53
In addition, the Senate has expressed its condolences to the people of the state the Senator represented and to his or th
her family. See, e.g., S.Res. 220, 110 Congress, a resolution honoring the life of Senator Craig Thomas, adopted June
47 Explicit authority to drape a desk in black was not identified. Nevertheless, references to draping of a deceased
Senator’s desk were identified in Senate debates regarding the death of Senators Thomas, Wellstone, and Chafee. See,
e.g., “Remembering Senator Craig Thomas,” Congressional Record, daily edition, June 6, 2007, p. S7106; vol. 148,
October 28. 2002, p. 21242; and vol. 145, October 29, 1999, p. 27620.
48 S.Res. 221, 98th Congress, A Resolution Relative to Flower Displays in the Chamber for Deceased Senators, adopted
September 15, 1983. Incorporated as a standing rule of the Senate in U.S. Senate, Senate Manual, 107th Cong., 1st
sess., S. Doc. 107-1 (Washington: GPO, 2002), p. 97.
49 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1046.
50 Senate Journal, vol. IV, June 5, 1809, pp. 380-381.
51 Senate Journal, vol. IV, June 15, 1809, p. 387.
52 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1046.
53 Ibid., p. 1047.
In 1895, the Senate considered S. 236, to provide for disposition of the remains of deceased
Members of the House and Senate who died at the Capitol during sessions. Upon the death of a
sitting Member in the District of Columbia, the measure would have provided for a committee of
Members from the chamber in which the deceased served to prepare the body for transport to
family or friends. The measure provided for a specially appointed sergeant at arms to accompany
the body to its final destination. S. 236 would have authorized payment for the preparation and
transport of a deceased Member and prohibited payment on any other related expenses. In
introductory remarks, the bill’s sponsor, Senator William Alfred Peffer of Kansas, noted that the
costs associated with Member funerals were rising and that the services themselves were “not
usually conducted reverently and with that outward deportment which ... ought to characterize the
bearing of eminent persons who accompany the remains of a public man.” S. 236 was reported by 54
the Committee on Civil Service, but the Senate took no further action.
Finally, some concern was expressed in 1906 after Representative Robert Adams Jr. of
Pennsylvania committed suicide and left a letter for Speaker Joseph Cannon indicating that he
would accept payment of his funeral expenses, but asked that the House not appoint a committee 55
or hold memorial services.
In contemporary practice, as described below, both chambers may pay for funeral services for
Members who die in office. Further, if a deceased Member is buried in the so-called 56
Congressional Cemetery in Washington, DC, the Sergeant at Arms of the House or Senate, as
appropriate, is authorized to pay for a granite monument with suitable inscriptions for the grave 57
Subject to any rules and regulations the Committee on House Administration may prescribe, the
House Sergeant at Arms is authorized and directed to make necessary arrangements for any
committee of Representatives and Senators appointed by their chambers to attend the funeral of a
deceased Member of the House. An official congressional delegation does not attend if the family
of the deceased Member arranges for private services. The Sergeant at Arms defrays the funeral
expenses of the deceased Member and the expenses of duly appointed congressional participants,
the widow or widower, and minor children incurred in attending the funeral rites and burial of the
Congressional Record, vol. 28, December 12, 1895, pp. 145-150; quote, p. 148.
55 Hinds, Hinds’ Precedents, vol. V, p. 1057. See also “House Is Astounded at “Bertie” Adams’ Suicide,” The
Washington Post, June 2, 1906, p. 2; and “Congressman a Suicide After Losses at Bridge,” The New York Times, June
2, 1906, p. 1.
56 Founded in 1807, the burying ground of Christ Church, Washington Parish, was, for more than 60 years, reportedly
“the sole place of burial in Washington for Members of Congress” and other federal government officials, and is often
identified, formally and informally, as the Congressional Cemetery. By the 1870s, however, advances in transportation
and embalming allowed Members of Congress who died in office to be transported to their home states or districts for th
interment. A recent history of the burying ground notes that, in the 19 century, 16 Senators, 68 Members of the House,
and Vice Presidents Elbridge Gerry and George Clinton were buried there. See Cathleen Breitkreutz, Historic
Congressional Cemetery: Developmental History (Washington: 2003), pp. 7-8, available at the Historic Congressional
Cemetery website, http://www.congressionalcemetery.org/index.html. A list of Members of Congress who were
interred, or for whom a monument has been erected, is available from the organization’s website. Some of the
Members listed died after their service in Congress concluded.
57 2 U.S.C. 51.
deceased Member.58 Published, publicly available House procedures for the remains of a sitting 59
Member of the House to lie in state in the Capitol have not been identified.
While the location of any funeral service is chosen by a deceased Senator’s widow, widower, or
heirs, the responsibility for official arrangements, including funeral or other services, and for any 60
committee appointed to attend services, rests with the Senate Sergeant at Arms. Costs of
arrangements made by the office of Sergeant at Arms for the transportation, preparation, and
disposition of the remains are paid from the contingent fund of the Senate, subject to regulations 61
of the Committee on Rules and Administration.
2 U.S.C. 124. Although it is not mentioned in any congressional or statutory authority, the House Sergeant at Arms
typically arranges for a wreath from the House to be sent to the site of the funeral.
59 Since 1953, Congress has typically adopted a concurrent resolution authorizing the use of the Capitol Rotunda for
services or for the remains of a government official or prominent citizen to lie in the Capitol. If Congress is not is
session, the use of Capitol facilities has in the past been authorized by the Speaker of the House and the majority leader
of the Senate. The most recent Member of Congress to lie in the Capitol was Representative Claude Denson Pepper of
Florida, June 1-2, 1989. Prior to his House service, Representative Pepper served as a Senator. See H.Con.Res. 139, st
101 Congress, Authorizing the Use of the Rotunda of the Capitol for the Lying in State of the Remains of the Late
Honorable Claude Pepper, adopted May 31, 1989; and the AOC website, “Those Who Have Lain in State or in Honor
in the Capitol Rotunda,” at http://www.aoc.gov/cc/capitol/lain_in_state.cfm. See CRS Report RL34619, Use of the
Capitol Rotunda and Capitol Grounds: Concurrent Resolutions, 101st to 110th Congress, by Matthew Eric Glassman
and Jacob R. Straus, for detailed information on the use of Capitol facilities.
60 S.Res. 458, 98th Congress, adopted October 4, 1984, as amended. The measure is incorporated as a standing rule of
the Senate in U.S. Senate, Senate Manual, pp. 100-103.
61 Arrangements may include ordinary and necessary expenses for the following:
Transportation of remains to the mortuary.
Complete preparation and care of the remains.
Automotive equipment, including limousine service for the immediate family, pallbearers, and the
Funeral home expenses for the receipt, care, and arrangement of floral tributes and a supply of
acknowledgment cards. Floral expenses themselves are deemed personal in nature and are not
considered an official expense, with the exception of one floral arrangement from the United States
Preparation of newspaper notices.
Procuring and executing the required certificates and permits.
Fees for use of a church, synagogue or other place of service.
Cremation fees, including an urn.
Interment fees or charges for grave services.
Burial vault and casket. Casket expense may not exceed $5,000.
One burial plot, not to exceed $2,000, if not previously purchased by the family, and a temporary
marker. Permanent grave markers or headstones are personal items and are not authorized by
committee regulations to be paid from appropriated funds.
Miscellaneous expenses directly related to the funeral, including fees for clergy or musicians, not to
exceed $2,500 in the aggregate. Expenses of a personal nature including food, flowers, or cards are
not authorized by committee regulations to be paid from appropriated funds.
The Senate Handbook notes that any request for exceptions must be made to the Sergeant at Arms and approved by the
Committee on Rules and Administration. U.S. Senate, Committee on Rules and Administration, United States Senate
Handbook, November 2006, pp. I-92—I-93.
If there is a request for the remains to lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda, the Senate Handbook
indicates that a decision is made by the leadership of the Senate and the House, and the Architect
of the Capitol. Since 1953, Congress has typically adopted a concurrent resolution authorizing the
use of the Capitol Rotunda for services or for the remains of a government official or prominent
citizen to lie in the Capitol. If Congress is not in session, the use of Capitol facilities has in the
past been authorized by the Speaker of the House and the majority leader of the Senate. If the
deceased does lie in state, the Senate Handbook notes that the Architect of the Capitol makes
arrangements with the Department of Defense for an honor guard. If there is to be a ceremony at 62
the Capitol, the Senate Sergeant at Arms makes the necessary arrangements.
On the first business day after the death of a Member of the House, his or her office is renamed
the Office of the ___ Congressional District of State/Territory. Pursuant to House Rule II, 63
cl.2(i)(1), staff on payroll of the congressional office at the time of the Member’s death remain
employed by the House, and carry out their duties under the supervision of the Clerk of the House 64
until a successor is elected.
By law, any unpaid balance of salary or other sums due to a deceased Representative or Resident 65
Commissioner are to be paid to their beneficiaries. In addition, it has been the typical practice of 66
the House to provide a death gratuity, equal to the Member’s annual salary, payable to the
U.S. Senate, United States Senate Handbook, p. I-92; Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774-
Present, website at http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp; and Architect of the Capitol website, “Those
Who Have Lain in State or in Honor in the Capitol Rotunda,” at http://www.aoc.gov/cc/capitol/lain_in_state.cfm. Six
Senators who died in office have lain in state in the Capitol. Hubert Horatio Humphrey of Minnesota, January 14-15,
1978; Everett McKinley Dirksen of Illinois, September 9-10, 1969; Robert Alphonso Taft of Ohio, August 2-3, 1953;
John Alexander Logan of Illinois, December 30-31, 1886; Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, March 13, 1874; and
Henry Clay of Kentucky, July 1, 1852.
63 House Rule II, cl. 2(i)(1) provides that “[t]he Clerk shall supervise the staff and manage the office of a Member,
Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who has died, resigned, or been expelled until a successor is elected.” 2 U.S.C.
92a, on the other hand, provides that staff of a deceased Member of the House or Senate are continued on the payroll
for 30 days. As Article 1, Section 5, clause 2 of the Constitution provides that “[e]ach House may determine the Rules
of its Proceedings,” House Rule II, cl.2(i)(1) arguably provides the House with sufficient authority to take actions
related to its administrative operations beyond the scope of the limitations specified in 2 U.S.C. 92.
64 A new Member of the House would have authority to hire staff, and is not required to retain staff members of the
65 2 U.S.C. 38a. Payment of unpaid salary is disbursed in the following order: (1) to the beneficiary or beneficiaries
designated in writing by Member prior to his or her demise, and filed with the House Chief Administrative Officer
(CAO); (2) if there is no such beneficiary, to the widow or widower; (3) if there is no beneficiary or surviving spouse,
to the child or children of the deceased Member, and descendants of deceased children, by representation; (4) if none of
the above, to the parents of the deceased Member, or their survivors; (5) if there are none of the above, to the duly
appointed legal representative of the estate of the deceased Member; or if there is none, (6) to the person or persons
determined to be entitled under the laws of the domicile of the deceased Member.
66 Cannon, Cannon’s Precedents, vol. VI, p. 380; and Lewis Deschler, Deschler’s Precedents of the United States
House of Representatives, vol. II, H.Doc. 94-661, 94th Cong., 2nd sess. (Washington: GPO, 1977), p. 52.
deceased Member’s widow or widower, or children,67 either in the annual legislative branch
appropriations act or a measure providing supplemental funds for the legislative branch. By 68
statute, a death gratuity is considered a gift.
Employees in the personal office of a deceased sitting Senator69 are continued on the Senate
payroll at their respective salaries for up to 60 days after the Senator’s death, unless the Senator’s 70
term of office expires sooner. The Committee on Rules and Administration may extend this
period in cases where it will take longer to close a deceased Senator’s office. Employee duties are 71
performed under the direction of the Secretary of the Senate.
An amount equal to one-tenth of the official office expense account portion of the Senator’s 72
Official Personnel and Office Expense Account is available to the Secretary of the Senate to
defray those expenses directly related to closing a Senator’s office. Expenses are paid from the
Contingent Fund of the Senate as Miscellaneous Items. The Senate Financial Clerk provides
information concerning allowances for the operation of the deceased Senator’s office during the 73
A deceased Senator is removed from the Senate payroll as of the date of death. The Employee 74
Benefits Section of the Senate Disbursing Office ascertains any benefits due to a beneficiary 75
previously identified by the Senator, or the widow or widower or other relevant survivors. The
Senate Handbook indicates that “[i]n the next Appropriation Bill, an item will be inserted for a
The CAO Office of Finance notifies the Committee on Appropriations of the names of the deceased Member’s heirs.
68 2 U.S.C. 38b.
69 Employees of Senators who die while holding the office of President pro tempore, Deputy President pro tempore,
President pro tempore emeritus, majority leader, minority leader, majority whip, minority whip, secretary of the
Conference of the Majority, secretary of the Conference of the Minority, the chairman of the Conference of the
Majority, the chairman of the Conference of the Minority, the chairman of the majority Policy Committee, or the
chairman of the minority Policy Committee, are also continued in their positions at their respective salaries for up to 60
days, subject to the same limitations of employees working in personal offices.
70 See also, CRS Report RL34553, Closing a Congressional Office: Overview and Guide to House and Senate
Practices, by R. Eric Petersen.
71 S.Res. 458, 98th Congress, adopted October 4, 1984, as amended. Incorporated as a standing rule of the Senate in
U.S. Senate, Senate Manual, pp. 100-103. 2 U.S.C. 92a, on the other hand, provides that staff of a deceased Member of
the House or Senate are continued on the payroll for 30 days. As Article 1, Section 5, clause 2 of the Constitution
provides that “[e]ach House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings,” S.Res. 458, as amended, arguably provides
the Senate with sufficient authority to take actions related to its administrative operations beyond the scope of the
limitations specified in 2 U.S.C. 92.
72 Senators have three official allowances available to them for personnel and official office expenses. They are the
administrative and clerical assistance allowance, the legislative assistance allowance, and the official office expense
allowance. The three allowances are funded together in a “Senators’ Official Personnel and Office Expense Account,”
within the “Contingent Expenses of the Senate” in the annual legislative branch appropriations bill. For further
information, see CRS Report RL30064, Congressional Salaries and Allowances, by Ida A. Brudnick.
73 U.S. Senate, United States Senate Handbook, p. I-91.
74 Benefits may include pay, retirement, life insurance, and health insurance.
75 2 U.S.C. 36a.
gratuity to be paid to the widow(er) or other next-of-kin, in the amount of one year’s 7677
compensation.” By statute, a death gratuity is considered a gift.
At the conclusion of a Congress in which a sitting Member of the House, or former Member who
served as Speaker, dies, the Government Printing Office, subject to the direction of the Joint
Committee on Printing, compiles, prepares, and prints, with illustrations, a tribute book. The book
contains the legislative proceedings of Congress, and the exercises at the general memorial
services held in the House in tribute to the deceased Member or former Speaker, together with all
relevant memorial addresses and eulogies published in the Congressional Record during the same
session of Congress, and any other matter the Joint Committee considers relevant. Fifty copies,
bound in full morocco, with gilt edges, and suitably lettered as may be requested, are delivered to 78
the family of the deceased. Further copies are distributed to Members of Congress.
The Senate may adopt a resolution ordering the printing of tributes to a deceased Senator be 79
printed as a Senate document.
U.S. Senate, United States Senate Handbook, p. I-92.
77 2 U.S.C. 38b.
78 44 U.S.C. 723. The remaining copies are sent as follows: one copy of all eulogies on the deceased Members of
Congress to the Vice President and each Senator, Representative, and Resident Commissioner in Congress.
Additionally, for a deceased Senator, 250 copies of eulogies are furnished to each Senator of the state represented by
the deceased, with 20 copies for each of the other Representatives, or Resident Commissioner of the state, or insular
possession. For a deceased Representative or Resident Commissioner, 250 copies of eulogies are furnished to his or her
successor in office; 20 copies for each of the other Representatives, or Resident Commissioner of the state, or insular
possession represented by the deceased; and 20 copies for each Senator from that state.
79 See, e.g., “Order for Printing and Submission of Tributes to Senator Craig Thomas,” Congressional Record, daily
edition, June 14, 2007, p. S7776; and “Printing of a Senate Document,” Congressional Record, vol. 148, November 12,
2002, p. 21309.
Table 1. Members of the House Who Died in Office, and Resolutions of Condolence Adopted
in the House and Senate, 1973-2008
Name State Date of Death Congress House Resolution Senate Resolution
Stephanie Tubbs Jonesa Ohio 8/20/2008 110th H.Res. 1415, 9/8/08 S.Res. 654, 9/10/08
Thomas Peter Lantosb California 2/11/2008 110th H.Res. 975, 2/12/08 S.Res. 446, 2/11/08
Julia May Carson Indiana 12/15/2007 110th H.Res. 880, 12/17/07 S.Res. 407, 12/17/07
Jo Ann Davis Virginia 10/6/2007 110th H.Res. 717, 10/6/07 –
Paul E. Gillmor Ohio 9/5/2007 110th H.Res. 632, 9/5/07 –
Juanita Millender-McDonald California 4/22/2007 110th H.Res. 328, 4/23/07 –
Charles W. (Charlie) Norwood, Jr. Georgia 2/13/2007 110th H.Res. 159, 2/14/07 S.Res. 79, 2/13/07
Robert T. Matsuic California 1/1/2005 –d H.Res. 11, 109th Congress 1/4/05 –
Patsy T. Minke Hawaii 9/28/2002 107th H.Res. 566, 10/1/02 S.Res. 331, 9/30/02
iki/CRS-RL34347Floyd D. Spence South Carolina 8/16/2001 107th H.Res. 234, 9/5/01 – f
g/wJohn Joseph Moakley Massachusetts 5/28/2001 107th H.Res. 157, 6/6/01 –
s.orNorman Sisisky Virginia 3/29/2001 107th H.Res. 107, 3/29/01 –
leakJulian C. Dixong California 12/8/2000 106th H.Res. 671, 12/8/00 S.Res. 387, 12/11/00
://wikiBruce F. Vento Minnesota 10/10/2000 106th H.Res. 618, 10/10/2000 S.Res. 369, 10/10/00
httpHerbert H. Bateman Virginia 9/11/2000 106th H.Res. 573, 9/12/2000 S.Res. 352, 9/11/2000
George E. Brown, Jr.h California 7/16/1999 106th H.Res. 252, 7/16/99 –
Steven H. Schiff New Mexico 3/25/1998 105th H.Res. 395, 3/25/98 –
Sonny Bonoi California 1/5/1998 105th H.Res. 338, 1/27/1998 –
Walter H. Capps California 10/28/1997 105th H.Res. 286, 10/29/97 –
Frank M. Tejedaj Texas 1/30/1997 105th H.Res. 35, 2/4/97 S.Res. 49, 2/4/97
Norvell W. (Bill) Emersonk Missouri 6/22/1996 104th H.Res. 459, 6/25/96 –
Dean A. Gallo New Jersey 11/6/1994 103rd H.Res. 587, 11/29/94 –
William H. Natcherl Mississippi 3/29/1994 103rd H.Res. 400, 4/12/94 –
Paul B. Henry Michigan 7/31/1993 103rd H.Res. 232, 8/2/93 –
Walter B. Jones North Carolina 9/15/1992 102nd H.Res. 567, 9/15/92 –
Theodore S. (Ted) Weiss New York 9/14/1992 102nd H.Res. 564, 9/14/92 –
Name State Date of Death Congress House Resolution Senate Resolution
Silvio O. Contem Massachusetts 2/8/1991 102nd H.Res. 76, 2/20/91 S.Res. 59, 2/21/91
Larkin I. Smith Mississippi 8/13/1989 101st H.Res. 232, 9/6/89 S.Res. 177, 9/13/89
George T. (Mickey) Leland Texas 8/7/1989 101st H.Res. 233, 9/6/89 S.Res. 176, 9/13/89
Claude D. Peppern Florida 5/30/1989 101st H.Res. 163, 5/31/89 S.Res. 137, 5/31/89
William (Bill) Flynt Nichols Alabama 12/13/1988 —o H.Res. 6, 101st Congress, 1/3/89 —
John James Duncan Tennessee 6/22/1988 100th H.Res. 481, 6/22/88 S.Res. 446, 6/23/88
Charles Melvin Price Illinois 4/22/1988 100th H.Res. 434, 4/25/88 S.Res. 416, 4/25/88
James John Howard New Jersey 3/25/1988 100th H.Res. 414, 3/28/88 S.Res. 401, 3/28/88
Wilbur Clarence (Dan) Daniel Virginia 1/23/1988 100th H.Res. 349, 1/25/88 S.Res. 375, 2/2/88
Stewart Brett McKinney Connecticut 5/7/1987 100th H.Res. 161, 5/7/87 S.Res. 209, 5/8/87
Sala Galante Burton California 2/1/1987 100th H.Res. 60, 2/2/87 S.Res. 96, 2/2/87
John Grotberg Illinois 11/15/1986 — p – –
iki/CRS-RL34347George Miller O’Brien Illinois 7/17/1986 99th H. Res. 500, 7/17/86 S. Res. 449, 7/21/86
g/wJoseph Patrick Addabo New York 4/10/1986 99th H. Res. 416, 4/14/86 S. Res. 382, 4/14/86
leakGillis William Long Louisiana 1/20/1985 99th H.Res. 29, 1/22/85 S. Res. 39, 1/21/85
://wikiCarl Dewey Perkins Kentucky 8/3/1984 98th H. Res. 566, 8/6/84 S.Res. 428, 8/6/84
httpEdwin Bell Forsythe New York 3/29/1984 98th H.Res. 474, 3/29/84 S. Res. 363, 3/29/84
Clement John Zablocki Wisconsin 12/3/1983 98th H.Res. 389, 1/23/84 S. Res. 307, 1/23/84
Lawrence Patton “Larry” McDonald Georgia 9/1/1983 98th H.Res. 307, 9/12/83 S. Res. 212, 9/12/83
Phillip Burtonq California 4/10/1983 98th H.Res. 157, 4/11/83 S. Res. 109, 4/12/83
Benjamin Stanley Rosenthalr New York 1/4/1983 98th H. Res. 28, 1/6/83 S. Res. 19, 1/27/83
Adam Benjamin Jr. Indiana 9/7/1982 97th H.Res. 579, 9/8/82 S. Res. 457, 9/8/82
John Milan Ashbrook Ohio 4/24/1982 97th H.Res. 436, 4/26/82 S. Res. 375, 4/26/82
William Ross Cotter Connecticut 9/8/1981 97th H. Res. 206, 9/9/81 S. Res. 208, 9/1/81
Tennyson Guyer Ohio 4/12/1981 97th H.Res. 128, 4/27/81 S. Res. 117, 4/27/81
Harold Lowell Runnels New Mexico 8/5/1980 96th H.Res. 761, 8/18/80 S. Res. 505, 8/19/80
John Mark Slack, Jr. West Virginia 3/17/1980 96th H.Res. 611, 3/18/80 S. Res. 386, 3/19/80
William Albert Steiger Wisconsin 12/4/1978 — s H.Res. 12, 96th Congress, 1/15/79 S. Res. 16, 1/18/79
Name State Date of Death Congress House Resolution Senate Resolution
Leo Joseph Ryan California 11/18/1978 — t H.Res. 11, 96th Congress, 1/15/79 S. Res. 17, 1/18/79
Goodloe Edgar Byron Maryland 10/11/1978 95th – –
Ralph Harold Metcalfe Illinois 10/10/1978 95th H. Res. 1422, 10/10/78 S. Res. 583, 10/10/78
William Matthew Ketchum California 6/24/1978 95th H.Res. 1249, 6/26/78 S. Res. 493, 6/26/78
Clifford Robertson Allen Tennessee 6/18/1978 95th H.Res. 1241, 6/19/78 S. Res. 490, 6/23/78
Jerry Lon Litton Missouri 8/3/1976 94th H.Res. 1461, 8/4/76 S. Res. 509, 8/4/76
Torbert H. MacDonald Massachusetts 5/21/1976 94th H. Res. 1212, 5/24/76 S. Res. 452, 5/24/76
William Aloysius Barrett Pennsylvania 4/12/1976 94th H. Res. 1154, 4/13/76 S. Res. 433, 4/14/76
Wright Patman Texas 3/7/1976 94th H.Res. 1080, 3/8/76 S. Res. 402, 3/19/76
Jerry Lyle Pettis California 2/14/1976 94th H. Res. 171, 2/17/75 S. Res. 81, 2/17/75
John Carl Kluczynski Illinois 1/26/1975 94th H. Res. 97, 1/27/75 S. Res. 34, 1/27/75
John Phillips Saylor Pennsylvania 10/28/1973 93rd H. Res. 667, 10/29/73 S. Res. 193, 10/30/73
iki/CRS-RL34347William Oswald Mills Maryland 5/24/1973 93rd H. Res. 411, 5/24/73 S. Res. 119, 5/29/73
s.orSource: CRS “Changes in the Membership of the 101st—110th Congress” lists; Roll Call “Departures” lists, Biographical Directory of the United States Congress,
leakhttp://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp, and the Legislative Information System (LIS). In the Resolutions columns, “—“ indicates no resolution was identified.
a. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, September 10, 2008.
://wikib. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, February 14, 2008.
c. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, January 5, 2005.
d. Died after adjournment of the 108th Congress (2003-2004), and before the 109th Congress (2005-2006) convened.
e. Posthumously reelected to 108th Congress (2003-2004).
f. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, June 13, 2001.
g. Reelected to the 107th Congress (2001-2002), but died before it convened.
h. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, July 30, 1999.
i. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, April 31, 1998.
j. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, January 28, 1998.
k. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, March 5, 1997.
l. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, May 4, 1994.
m. Memorial service held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, February 27, 1991.
n. Served in the Senate prior to service in the House. Laid in state in the Capitol Rotunda, June 1-2, 1989 (authorized by H.Con.Res. 139, 101st Congress).
o. Died after adjournment of the 100th Congress (1989-1990), and before the 101st Congress (1991-1992) convened.
p. Died after adjournment of the 99th Congress (1985-86).
q. Joint memorial service, honoring Representative Burton and Representative Benjamin Stanley Rosenthal held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, June 27,
r. Joint memorial service, honoring Representative Rosenthal and Representative Phillip Burton held in Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol, June 27, 1983.
s. Died after adjournment of the 95th Congress (1977-78), and before the 96th Congress (1979-80) convened.
t. Died after adjournment of the 95th Congress (1977-78), and before the 96th Congress (1979-80) convened.
Table 2. Senators Who Died in Office, And Resolutions of Condolence Adopted in the Senate and House, 1978-2007
Name State Date of Death Congress Senate Resolution House Resolution
Craig Lyle Thomas Wyoming 6/4/2007 110th S.Res. 6/4/07 H.Res. 454, 6/5/07
Paul David Wellstone Minnesota 10/25/2002 107th S.Res. 354, 10/28/02 H.Res. 598, 11/12/02
Paul Coverdell Georgia 7/18/2000 106th S.Res. 388, 7/18/00 H.Res. 558, 7/19/00
iki/CRS-RL34347John Hubbard Chafee Rhode Island 10/24/1999 106th S.Res. 206, 10/25/99 H.Res. 341, 10/25/99
s.orQuentin Northrup Burdick North Dakota 8/8/1992 102nd S.Res. 338, 9/8/92 H.Res. 559, 9/9/92
leakHenry John Heinz, III Pennsylvania 4/4/1991 102nd S.Res. 92, 4/9/91 H.Res. 119, 4/9/91
://wikiSpark Masayuki Matsunaga Hawaii 4/15/1990 101st S.Res. 271, 4/18/90 H.Res. 377, 4/18/90
httpEdward Zorinsky Nebraska 3/6/1987 100th S.Res. 163, 3/10/86 H.Res. 115, 3/10/87
John Porter East North Carolina 6/29/1986 99th S.Res. 442, 7/14/86 H.Res. 491, 7/15/86
Henry Martin (Scoop) Jackson Washington 9/1/1983 98th S.Res. 209, 9/12/83a H.Res. 306, 9/12/83
James Browning Allen Alabama 6/1/1978 95th S.Res. 472, 5/5/78b H.Res. 1216, 6/15/78
Hubert Horatio Humphrey, Jr. Minnesota 1/13/1978 95th S.Res. 350, 1/19/78c H.Res. 951, 1/19/78
Source: CRS “Changes in the Membership of the 101st—110th Congress” lists; Roll Call “Departures” lists, Biographical Directory of the United States Congress,
http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp, and the Legislative Information System (LIS).
a. The same day, the Senate also passed S.Res. 210, authorizing funeral delegation expenses.
b. The same day, the Senate also passed S.Res. 473, authorizing funeral delegation expenses.
c. The same day, the Senate also passed S.Res. 351, authorizing funeral delegation expenses.
R. Eric Petersen Jennifer E. Manning
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