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York, Chester, Lancaster senators react to shooting death of colleague in Charleston church

John King
John King

“He was not just a good senator, but a good man. He had a very forceful voice, almost like a radio voice. He was certainly not afraid to speak out, but he was always willing to listen. Everybody liked and respected him. When he spoke, people listened. He was not constantly speaking, but you listen more to somebody when they don’t always talk.” – Sen. Wes Hayes, R-Rock Hill

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“My heart aches and my soul grieves for his family and his parishioners. He was a gentle giant with a booming voice. ... He was extremely polite, but when he spoke it was eloquent. He spoke with gentleness, but he was forceful.” – Rep. Gary Simrill, R-Rock Hill

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“The members of the Legislature, not just the Black caucus, but all of us, are in mourning for Sen. Pinckney and all these victims of this crime. Sen. Pinckney was a great man. Great. My heart is broken for all these families.” – Rep. John King, D-Rock Hill

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“He was a prince of a fellow. As an AME preacher, he could talk in this resounding voice. About two months ago, I remember him speaking on the floor, and his passion and his ability to speak just made you stop and think.” – Sen. Creighton Coleman, D-Winnsboro

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“Clementa was one of the most humble people who ever served with me in the Senate. Serving here can make some people cynical, but he was always an optimist. I don’t remember him ever saying anything negative. The way he carried himself was a great example.” – Sen. Greg Gregory, R-Lancaster

Compiled by Bristow Marchant

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