Congrats to the class of 2014

We congratulate our area graduates and offer them some marching orders.
May 29, 2014


First of all, kudos to you. Graduating from high school is an important milestone in your life.

But it’s not an end. It’s just a stop along what can be a great journey. We wish you success as you move to the next level, whether it is a job or more schooling. And remember, success isn’t solely based on financial gain. Do something you really love doing and do something to benefit others.

Be safe. Newspapers are filled with stories about teenagers consuming alcohol at graduation parties — some with the knowledge of adults — and then being involved in tragic accidents. Don’t be a part of the sad statistics.

And above all, come back to the Tri-Cities. It’s a great place to live, work, play and raise a family.

The above words are important and sincerely written, but our attention was drawn recently to remarks by Naval Adm. William H. McRaven, ninth commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, at the University-wide Commencement at The University of Texas at Austin on May 17.

Adm. McRaven has been a Navy SEAL for more than 30 years; serving most recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He told the grads 10 lessons he learned from basic SEAL training that he hoped would be of value to them as they move forward in life.

His entire commencement address can be found here. It is well worth the time to read it, not just for our area graduates, but for all of us.

He told the graduating class that they are moments away from beginning their journey through life. Moments away from starting to change the world – for the better.

He ended his address with the following:

“It will not be easy.

“But, YOU are the class of 2014 — the class that can affect the lives of millions of people in the next century.

“Start each day with a task completed.

“Find someone to help you through life.

“Respect everyone.

“Know that life is not fair and that you will fail often, but if you take some risks, step up when the times are toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the downtrodden and never, ever give up — if you do these things, then next generation and the generations that follow will live in a world far better than the one we have today and — what started here will indeed have changed the world — for the better.”

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung, Alex Doty and Fred VandenBrand. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.


Tri-cities realist

Kudos Vlad for the link, it was a great speech.


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