To my daughter as she leaves…

Speech to friends and family at the high school graduation party for my daughter on July 4, 2017.

Last weekend we visited the college Dagny has selected for her next step in life.

It was our third time visiting and her first time staying overnight in the dorm. Lees-McRae college is a really special place- it is like a magical perfect fit for Dagny. And her major, new to the school with the highest elevation campus in the east, is like it was created just for her.

Lees-McRae is in an amazing part of the country. Banner Elk, North Carolina is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been in 51 years of traveling around the country. There are too many recreational opportunities to even mention.

Dagny is so ready. Lori and I are both supremely confident that she is prepared to bloom like crazy in this next step.

Are there drawbacks? We certainly wish it wasn’t ten hours away but, on the long ride last weekend, you have a lot of time to talk… and think. While Dagny, Lori and Taco slept through part of Virginia I thought about what I wanted to say on this day.

What came to me was kind of poetic and apropos to Dagny and her situation…

You don’t have to go far to do great things
but if you do great things, you’ll go far.

We have no doubt that Dagny is going to do great things in the caring little community in the high country of North Carolina for the next four years and that everyone will be invited down to the next great celebration in the Blue Ridge Mountains!

Thank you all for coming, you’re a big part of Dagny’s success thus far! We toast you and thank you for being a part of the village that it takes.

To Dagny, the most authentic soul I have ever known, may you always be as inevitable as the tides and as mighty as the mountains!

May the trail rise up to meet you
May you always ride with a tail wind
And may the sun shine warm upon your face.

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