WASHINGTON – Senator Olympia Snowe on Tuesday described the late Caspar Weinberger as one of Maine's "most respected, admired and treasured adopted sons."
Delivering a eulogy at Arlington Cemetery, Snowe said the former defense secretary played an important role in the fall of the Soviet Union. She also described the Mount Desert resident as being as "sturdy and resolute" as Maine's rocky coastline.
Also on hand were Britain's former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, former Secretary of State Colin Powell and current Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, among others.
Weinberger served in both the Nixon and Reagan cabinets, ending as President Reagan's defense secretary. While at the Pentagon, he oversaw a doubling of the defense budget over five years. It was the biggest jump in peacetime military spending in the nation's history.
Weinberger was a California native. He died at age 88 a week ago at the Eastern Maine Medical Center with his wife Jane at his side.