"Tammy and I are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Senator Ron Rice, the longest-serving Black legislator in New Jersey history. For over 36 years in the New Jersey Senate, Senator Rice served as a fearless and passionate advocate for his constituents and a powerful champion for social justice with a record of transformational legislative successes. Prior to his work in government, Senator Rice’s career of service began as a Marine in the Vietnam War and a City of Newark police officer.
"Born in the Jim Crow-era South, Senator Rice never hesitated to speak out when he saw injustice, nor did he back down from a challenge. His legacy and example will continue to inspire this administration and all of New Jersey’s leaders to work toward racial equity and expand opportunity for underserved communities.
"We send our heartfelt condolences to all of Senator Rice’s family, especially his children, Ronald Jr. and Yuki. I will be signing an executive order directing flags to fly at half-staff in his honor."