Who needs Rambo when you have Daniel Inouye? He was part fearless warrior, part peaceful politician. How much do you know about the man who always went for broke, in both his personal and professional life?
Inouye served his country as a senator from Hawaii. But before getting into politics, he did things that even Hollywood writers couldn't imagine.
The name is pronounced ee-NO-ay. It's not your typically American name. But Inouye was not your typical American, either.
Both of his parents were Japanese immigrants. This fact had a huge impact on his path in life.
Inouye was known for his consistently compassionate treatment of others. He took pre-med classes at the university but eventually left school.
Inouye wanted to become a surgeon. He soon found his plans in medicine derailed by events far beyond his personal control.
Inouye volunteered for medical help following the attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II. He eventually left school and joined the Army.
At the war's outset, men of Japanese descent were categorized as enemies. It wasn't until later in the war that these men were allowed to join the armed forces.
The 442nd Infantry Regiment was mostly made of Japanese-American soldiers, and most of the men were deployed to the European war theater. It was considered a segregated unit.
During a terrifying 1945 battle, a Nazi soldier shot Inouye's arm, which was nearly severed from his body. The severed arm, unfortunately, was still holding a grenade that Inouye had just activated.
He used his good hand to grab the grenade and chucked it at the German who'd just shot him. Then, of course, he jumped up with his machine gun and blasted off a few rounds before fainting.
He couldn't become a surgeon with just one arm. But he did earn a political science degree that he used extensively later in his life.
Many Japanese-Americans were unjustly rounded up into internment camps during the war. Fortunately for Inouye, his parents were not subjected to this level of mistreatment.
Inouye, like most Americans, wanted answers, and he was the right man to ask questions. He badgered the politicians involved in the scandal and emerged as a champion for the public.
He never lost an election in Hawaii. And when he won, he nearly always had more than 60 percent of the vote.
He was a reserved, patient man while serving in the public eye. He garnered tremendous respect even from his opponents.
If something had happened to the president, and then the vice president and speaker of the house, presidential duties would have fallen to Inouye, who was president pro tempore of the Senate.
He was elected over and over again, to the tune of nine consecutive terms. He served for 49 years.
Approval ratings don't really get much higher (at least outside of fascist countries). His approval rating following Watergate was an astounding 84%.
The two were married for 58 years. Two years after Maggie's death, Inouye married again, this time to a woman named Irene, who wasn't born until 1948.
In part because of his ethnicity, his country didn't immediately offer him the Medal of Honor. He wasn't recognized until 2000, half a century after the war ended.
Inouye was part of Hawaii's Territorial Senate in the 1950s. When Hawaii earned statehood in 1959, he became the first Japanese-American congressman in history.
Inouye's professionalism and calm demeanor -- and the public's trust in him -- made him an obvious choice for the committee that investigated the Iran-Contra scandal. The Reagan administration was later forced to admit that it traded arms for hostages held in Iran.
If Inouye was bitter about the treatment of Japanese-Americans during the war, he didn't say much. He went to fight "for the children."
He was a moderate with liberal tendencies. He served during a time of major cultural tumult and supported the civil rights movement.
The Japanese-American unit was segregated from other combat teams, but the men more than proved their value. Relative to size, it was the most decorated unit in the history of the entire American military.
Although he was a patient man, he was furious that a barber would refuse service to a war veteran. Inouye said he wanted to demolish the shop but instead restrained himself.
He initially supported President Johnson's efforts in Vietnam, but in the end, Inouye didn't support the war or the suffering it caused.
He had no plans to retire and wanted to run for a 10th term, even though he would have been serving that term well into his 90s.
He began suffering from breathing problems late in life and resorted to using oxygen. Eventually, his breathing gave out and he died on December 17, 2012.
Before he faded from consciousness, Inouye spoke one last word: "Aloha," a Hawaiian word which has become both a greeting and a goodbye.