Massachusetts: The Gentleman from Martin, Mr. North Attleboro

It was a routine call for the Beacon Ambulance Service of Fort Lauderdale. No sirens, no red lights, just an old man dead on arrival at the Florida hos pital. The autopsy revealed "peritonitis, secondary to acute gangrenous appendicitis, ruptured." Only an uncommonly tough character could have endured such pain so long and without any relief through drugs or antibiotics. Indeed, the manner of Joe Martin's departure from life was entirely consistent with the way in which he had always conducted it. The former Republican Speaker of the House, dead last week...