Schwarzenegger came to politics after careers as a bodybuilder and actor and credited Kennedy with helping him in his current role. The governor issued the following statement Tuesday night:
He was known to the world as the Lion of the Senate, a champion of social justice, and a political icon. Most importantly, he was the rock of our family: a loving husband, father, brother and uncle. He was a man of great faith and character. Teddy inspired our country through his dedication to health care reform, his commitment to social justice, and his devotion to a life of public service. I have personally benefited and grown from his experience and advice, and I know countless others have as well. Teddy taught us all that public service isn't a hobby or even an occupation, but a way of life and his legacy will live on.
Kennedy's death came just two weeks after that of Shriver's mother, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, one of the senator's siblings.