HONORING FRED BERRY
(Extensions of Remarks - September 13, 2012)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Pages E1523-E1524]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                          HONORING FRED BERRY

                                 ______
                                 

                          HON. JOHN F. TIERNEY

                            of massachusetts

                    in the house of representatives

                      Thursday, September 13, 2012

  Mr. TIERNEY. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to a gentleman 
and true public servant: Massachusetts State Senate Majority Leader 
Frederick E. Berry. Several months ago, Senator Berry announced that he 
would be retiring from the Massachusetts Senate after 30 years of 
service. He will be sorely missed.
  Fred Berry was born on December 20, 1949 with cerebral palsy. At that 
time, doctors said he would never walk or talk--but Fred proved them 
all wrong. He attended Massachusetts State Hospital School and later 
Bishop Fenwick High School in Peabody, where he graduated in 1968. He 
then attended Boston College, graduating in 1972.
  In 1979, Fred was elected to the Peabody City Council, and, in 1982, 
he was elected to the Massachusetts Senate. During his tenure in the 
Senate, Fred served on multiple committees and assumed numerous 
leadership roles. In 2003, he was elected by his colleagues to be the 
Senate Majority Leader, which is a position he continues to hold today.
  Fred's thirty year career is filled with memorable moments and 
achievements. His accomplishments are too long to list here, but they

[[Page E1524]]

include the following: creating separate Departments of Mental Health 
and Mental Retardation; providing crime victims the right to be heard 
during the judicial process, allowing victims to receive financial 
compensation and establishing the Massachusetts Victim and Witness 
Assistance Board; creating the Children's Trust Fund, a public-private 
partnership to create programs to end child abuse; founding the 
Massachusetts Legislative Children's Caucus; requiring insurance 
companies to cover Early Intervention benefits for children born with 
developmental delays; requiring private insurance companies to cover 
medically necessary autism treatments, including evidence-based 
behavioral health treatments; fighting against efforts to reduce 
Medicaid benefits for individuals with mental health and addiction 
disorders; and filing legislation that allowed Salem State College--my 
alma mater--to achieve university status.
  In addition to his legislative work, Fred is a passionate advocate 
for children and families who are struggling. In 1982, shortly after he 
was first elected to the Massachusetts Senate, Fred established the 
Fred Berry Charitable Fund. Over the next thirty years, he would work 
tirelessly to raise over $1 million to benefit children and families in 
need. As Fred recently told the Boston Globe, ``I felt I could use my 
notoriety to help others. Nonprofits always need money, but never have 
the time to raise it. . . . To be honest, it hurt fund-raising for my 
campaigns. People said, `I already gave to Fred.' '' But in his heart, 
Fred knew it was the right thing to do.
  I want to wish Fred and his wife Gayle all of the best. For those of 
us who know Fred, we anxiously await the next chapter in what has been 
a remarkable life.

                          ____________________