From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
Thursday, July 12, 2001
Contact: Jeremy Warren, (512) 463-0113


"I was shocked and saddened to hear of the death of my friend and a great Texan, Senator Tom Haywood. Although Tom and I often differed on the issues, we shared a common bond: a deep and abiding love for Texas and its people, and a desire to do what's right for them. Tom was a figure of grace and strength that will be sorely missed in the Texas Senate.

"Tom was a good and decent man, and a Senator of principle and character who worked diligently for his constituents and all Texans. I enjoyed working with him on important legislation, including the child care tax credit bill we carried two years ago and efforts to increase awareness of the importance of agriculture in Texas. I also respected and enjoyed his hard work on the Senate Finance Committee. When we held an open meeting of the Finance Committee one evening so that real Texans could come and testify about what was important to them, Senator Haywood stayed until the very end. That diligence and work ethic inspired all of his colleagues in the Senate.

"Of course, I will never forget when he walked across the Senate Chamber to let me know that he would vote to allow the hate crimes bill to come up for Senate floor debate. That was the turning point in the fight to pass that important bill. Tom's stand will always be remembered as a profile in courage in the Texas Senate.

"I know these are trying times for the Haywood family. Just last month, I joined them in mourning the loss of Tommy Haywood, the Senator's son. My family and I are praying for them now, and hope they are consoled by the love and admiration of all Texan's for Tom's life and accomplishments."