While listening to the recaps of his life, it struck me that his effectiveness was due to the fact that this man had truly found his niche in the senate. There must have been tremendous pressure for him to fill his brother's shoes and strive for the Presidency, which he did attempt in 1980, but it seems that he realized his place was working behind the scenes for change, and that was where he remained. I applaud his ability recognize his particular skill set and work with it to maximize his individual potential. Clearly, his gifts were the ability to advocate for fairness and equality, in addition to being able to compromise and work with senators from both parties.
We're all presented with a unique set of gifts. So often we get caught up in what we "should" be, or in the quest to be "better", or move up the ladder, but that doesn't always translate to using our own skills in a way that is best for us, personally. Not everyone is cut out to be a senator, businessperson, doctor or lawyer; the trick is to figure out what your skills are, what you want to do with them, and be the best at it that you possibly can.
Rest in Peace, Senator Kennedy and thank you for being such a powerful role model on so many levels.