The top Democratic leader in the US House of Representatives has described American Samoa's long-serving former Congressman, Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin, as a patriot and a leader who personified the highest ideals of the nation.
Faleomavaega passed away this week at the age of 73 at his home in Provo, Utah.
Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, former Speaker of the US House of California, said Faleomavaega brought outspoken and effective leadership for American Samoa to the House of Representatives during his 26 years in Congress.
Mrs Pelosi also said that Faleomavaega was a relentless champion for the rights and advancement of his constituents.
"Additionally, his life and leadership powerfully spotlighted the immense contributions of Americans from U.S. territories," she said.
New York congressman Elliot Engel said Faleomavaega was a tireless public servant and dedicated champion for his constituents in American Samoa.
Mr Engel, the ranking Democratic member on the US House Committee on foreign affairs, said Faleomavaega "was a valued leader" on the foreign affairs committee, where Faleomavaega served for many years.
"As the first Asian Pacific American to chair the Asia-Pacific subcommittee," Mr Engel said Faleomavaega was an early voice speaking about the importance of America's role and interests in that part of the world.
He also said that Faleomavaega himself helped to strengthen the relationships between the United States and its friends and allies in Asia and the Pacific.