Honoring Leader Michel
Celebration of Life Ceremony for Leader Bob Michel
Eulogized as an "extraordinary American", a "great patriot", and a "Man of the House," former House Republican leader Bob Michel was honored during a Celebration of Life Ceremony at the U.S. Capitol on March 9, 2017.
Leader Michel passed away on February 17, 2017, in Arlington, Virginia. Mr. Michel was first elected to Congress in 1956 to represent the 18th Congressional District of Illinois. He served as Minority Leader from 1981 until 1995 and was the longest serving minority leader in House history.
During the ceremony, Speaker Paul Ryan said Leader Michel "loved this place, but he really loved the people. He not only shaped events, he also shaped people's lives." Former Vice President Dick Cheney called Leader Michel "one of the finest men I have ever known. Authentic and devoid of pretense."
Mr. Michel served in the Army during World War II and was injured by machine gun fire during the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded two Bronze Stars and the Purple Heart.
Former Secretary of State James Baker called Leader Michel "The most honorable man…duty, honor and country describe almost everything that he did. He was a generous and decent man, as humble as his Midwestern roots."