Rep. Bill Hamzy, R-Terryville, announced Monday that he will not be seeking re-election. And even though he was asked to wait until Tuesday when some of the other representatives will announce their retirements, Hamzy wanted to do it Monday.
Read his parting remarks a day in advance:
Mr. Speaker, I rise with very mixed emotions today to announce that I have decided not to seek another term as state Representative from the 78th District.
My service in this historic chamber and building has been overwhelmingly positive. In a lot of respects, it defies logic that I am here and have been here for the last 16 years. As the son of parents who immigrated here from Lebanon to a community with a handful of people of Lebanese descent and as a Republican in a district that is predominantly Democrat, logically this should not have happened.
But, I truly believe that my experience is yet another example of the greatness of our communities, our state and our nation. It is yet another sentence in the stories of the people who make up the United States of America.
The sheer greatness of the people who founded our country and created this form of representative democracy never ceases to amaze me.
My parents instilled in me a sense of responsibility and a sense of duty to serve my community. Because they fully understood that if we were to enjoy the freedoms that many people around the world die for each and every day, then we also had to own up to our responsibilities which must accompany these freedoms. As much as people try, you cannot separate these two things.
And that is why I am worried about our future. I am worried because today, watching the latest reality television show is more important than volunteering at a social service organization. Following the latest drama in Hollywood is more important than learning the issues that are discussed here in this building.
I wish I had a simple solution to this problem which affects each and every one of us. I wish I could just snap my fingers and change this situation. But, obviously, I can’t.
However, I can tell you that for me, there could not be a more rewarding professional experience than representing the people of Plymouth and Bristol in this great institution.
Has it been frustrating at times? Of course. Has it been demanding to get up in the morning, go to my law office, come up here for meetings or public hearings or sessions until late into the night and then have to go back to my law office until midnight or 1 in the morning just to repeat it all over again the next day? Certainly.
But that is the beauty of this system.
That a son of immigrant parents can grow up in Terryville, CT to open his own law firm and be elected to the CT House of Representatives.
However, as they say, all good things must come to an end. And while this has been one of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to make, I know in my heart that it’s the right one. I have truly been blessed in my life. I honestly don’t know the reason but I will tell you that I am very grateful. I have a saint for a wife and two healthy children. When I first got here, I wasn’t married and had no children.
Juggling my professional responsibilities with my legislative duties was much easier. However, I just can’t miss any more baseball practices or any more dance recitals. I have often been told that there is no rewind button when you have children. Once those moments are gone, they don’t come back.
And I know it seems cliché to say that you’re leaving because you want to spend more time with your family, but for me, that is the only reason.
I have loved this experience and can only hope that more people will choose to serve their communities, not necessarily in the political arena but in all the other ways which are just as important to better our state and country.
I’d like to end by extending my sincere thanks to all of the people who I have served with during my tenure but especially to Larry Cafero and Themis Klarides. I’d also like to thank the people of the 78th District for putting their faith and trust in me to serve them here in our state Capitol. And finally, I’d like to thank my family for being understanding enough to have allowed me to serve in this office.
Thank you again and God Bless You.