Biden reflects on tragic accident loss in speech to soldiers’ families
Kathleen Hennessey, LA Times - Speaking to the families of dead soldiers, Vice President Joe Biden on Friday delivered an emotional retelling of his own family tragedy, the death of his wife and daughter in a car crash 40 years ago, saying the experience helped him understand why people commit suicide.
Biden said the shock and pain of the deaths in 1972, shortly after he was first elected to the Senate, was a “black hole you feel in your chest, like you’re being sucked back into it.”
“It was the first time in my career, my life, I realized someone could go out – and I probably shouldn’t say this with the press here, but – no, but it’s more important. You’re more important. For the first time in my life I understood how someone could consciously decide to commit suicide,” Biden said. “Not because they were deranged, not because they were nuts; because they’d been to the top of the mountain and they just knew in their heart they’d never get there again, that it was never going to be that way ever again. That’s how an awful lot of you feel.”
C-Span Video. The section everyone’s talking about is the 2.5 minutes after 12:16, but the whole speech is deeply personal and moving.