My Dad was valedictorian of Flint Mandeville HighSchool class of 1956 about 90 kids. I happenedacross his graduating speech recently, and it blew meaway. 53 years ago my Dad said: "We are entering achanging world, one of automation and employmentchange where education is an economic necessity.We will have increased periods of time to do as wewish,as our work week and retirement age continueto decline and we wish that were true. We shall take part in, or witness, developments inscience, medicine, and industry that we can only dream of today. It is said that the future ofany nation can be determined by the care and preparation given to its youth.
If all the youths of America were as fortunate in securing an education as we have been, thenthe future of the United States would be even more bright than it is today. "If my Dad werealive today, the thing I think he would be most happy about is that Lucy and I have a baby inthe hopper. I think he would have been annoyed that I hadn't gotten my Ph.D. yet. Thanks,Michigan!
Dad was so full of insights, of excitement about new things, that to this day, I often wonderwhat he would think about some new development. If he were here today. Well, it would be oneof the best days of his life. He'd be like a kid in a candy store. For a day, he'd be young again.Many of us are fortunate enough to be here with family. Some of us have dear friends andfamily to go home to. And who knows, perhaps some of you, like Lucy and I, are dreamingabout future families of your own. Just like me, your families brought you here, and youbrought them here.
Please keep them close and remember: they are what really matters in life.Thanks, Mom.Thanks, Lucy. And thank you, all, very much.