“Bryan and I had spent time (Saturday) watching a college baseball game and marveling at the divers competing in the Olympic trials,” Gov. Linda Lingle said in a statement released late Sunday.
“We had talked about the bills I was considering signing and those I might veto, including the bill regarding the Koke‘e cabins on Kaua‘i.
“Bryan was a humble man who never lost sight of the fact that as a politician, he was there to serve the people, not the other way around,” she said. “He was a leader with great integrity and always cared more about doing what was right for Kaua‘i and making a difference in people’s lives than receiving credit or taking the limelight. He had a big heart and true compassion for people and his home island of Kaua‘i.
“For the people of Kaua‘i, this is a very difficult time, but I am confident that they will pull together as they always do in times of adversity and tragedy to support one another and move Kaua‘i County forward. Bryan would have expected no less,” Lingle said.
“I will miss Bryan’s friendship, his sense of humor and his caring spirit. He was a true friend. It is hard to believe that he is gone,” she said. “My heart and prayers go out to Mayor Baptiste’s wife, Annette, and their four children.”