Columbia, SC Former 3rd District U.S. Rep. Butler Derrick has been properly remembered as a generous and gracious man for his many years of public service. Indeed, he mastered and dignified the legislative process in many ways that improved the quality of life for South Carolinians and the nation.
Perhaps less recognized among his achievements was his appointment to conduct a hearing on reauthorization of the Older Americans Act, in 1984. Congressman Derrick invited me and other members of South Carolina’s aging network to provide expert testimony on the problems of service delivery to rural older citizens.
As a founding member of the USC Academic Committee on Gerontology, I spoke to the need for well-educated and trained personnel and volunteers to serve and manage our state’s service-delivery system. He and other members of Congress listened and acted in dramatic fashion. Congressman Derrick, unlike many current members of Congress, demonstrated class, sensitivity and fortitude in working across party lines on behalf of our citizens.
Gerald L. Euster