Late Mass. US Sen. Ted Kennedy is honored for his support of immigrants, Mexican-Americans

BOSTON (AP) — The late Massachusetts U.S. Sen. Edward Kennedy has been awarded Mexico's highest honor for his lifelong support of immigrants and Mexican-Americans.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon (fay-LEE'-pay kahl-duh-ROHN') on Thursday presented the Order of the Aztec Eagle to Kennedy's widow, Vicki, in Washington, D.C.

Kennedy's longtime Senate colleagues John Kerry of Massachusetts and Christopher Dodd of Connecticut also were present.

The award honors heads of state and other foreign dignitaries for distinguished service to Mexico or to humankind.

Kerry says Kennedy's work as a champion of immigrants made it possible for many Mexican-Americans and others to find new homes in the United States.

Dodd says Kennedy understood the United States and Mexico had to work together on many issues.