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Tom Hanks delivers inspiring virtual commencement address to Ohio university graduates – Daily Mail

By May 4, 2020 Entertainment News

‘You are the chosen ones’: Tom Hanks delivers inspiring virtual commencement address to Ohio university graduates

The university honored him with the opening in 2016 of the Tom Hanks Center for Motion Pictures.

And on Saturday, Tom Hanks paid it forward by delivering a commencement address for the Class of 2020 at Ohio’s Wright State University Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Picture.

In the speech, played on video during the virtual graduation ceremony and posted to YouTube, Hanks paid tribute to the graduates calling them the ‘chosen ones’.

Virtual ceremony: Tom Hanks delivered a commencement address for the Class of 2020 at Ohio's Wright State University Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Picture on Saturday

Virtual ceremony: Tom Hanks delivered a commencement address for the Class of 2020 at Ohio’s Wright State University Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Picture on Saturday

The double Oscar winner, 63, began by saying: ‘I’m here to say congratulations. Congratulations to you chosen ones.’

‘And I am calling you ‘chosen ones’ because you have been chosen in many ways. First, by the temperament and discipline you’ve lived by. By the creative fires that are inside of you. And the instinctive lunges of your desires.’ 

‘You succeeded because of the aid and the love of others that are in your lives, without a doubt. But you have succeeded mostly because you and you alone chose to do so. You are the chosen ones.’ 

Thoughtful: The double Oscar winner, 63, reflected that the graduating students had begun their studies in 'olden times', the time before the coronavirus pandemic

Thoughtful: The double Oscar winner, 63, reflected that the graduating students had begun their studies in ‘olden times’, the time before the coronavirus pandemic

Inspiring: 'You will have made it through a time of great sacrifice and great need and no one will be more fresh to the task of restarting our measure of normalcy than you, you chosen ones,' Hanks said

Inspiring: ‘You will have made it through a time of great sacrifice and great need and no one will be more fresh to the task of restarting our measure of normalcy than you, you chosen ones,’ Hanks said

The actor reflected that the graduating students had begun their studies at Wright State University in ‘olden times’, the time before the coronavirus pandemic.  

‘You will talk about your lives just that way: ‘Well, that was back before the COVID-19. That was before the great pandemic,” Hanks said.

‘Part of your lives will forever be identified as ‘before’ in the same way other generations tell time like, ‘Well, that was before the war,’ or ‘That was before the internet,’ or That was before Beyoncé.’ The word ‘before’ is going to carry great weight with you.’

He reassured them that a time will come when they will be in the ‘after’, the period to come when COVID-19 will no longer pose such a dangerous threat. 

‘You will have made it through a time of great sacrifice and great need and no one will be more fresh to the task of restarting our measure of normalcy than you, you chosen ones,’ Hanks concluded.

‘The future is always uncertain, but we who celebrate what you have done, who celebrate all of your achievements, we are certain of one thing on this day: You will not let us down.’ 

Feted: In 2016, Hanks had been honored by Wright State University with the opening of the Tom Hanks Center for Motion Pictures

Feted: In 2016, Hanks had been honored by Wright State University with the opening of the Tom Hanks Center for Motion Pictures

Hanks recently had cause to celebrate for his own personal reasons.

Last Thursday, he and Wilson marked their 32nd wedding anniversary.

He’s also revealed that he is donating plasma containing COVID-19 antibodies to help researchers develop a vaccine for the virus.  

Hanks was the first celebrity to share publicly in March that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

He and wife Rita Wilson, also positive, were hospitalized in Australia where they were treated for the coronavirus and ultimately recovered.

Still together: Hanks recently had cause to celebrate for his own personal reasons. Last Thursday, he and Wilson marked their 32nd wedding anniversary

Still together: Hanks recently had cause to celebrate for his own personal reasons. Last Thursday, he and Wilson marked their 32nd wedding anniversary 

Helping: Hanks was the first celebrity to share publicly in March that he had tested positive for COVID-19. He is donating plasma containing antibodies to help researchers develop a vaccine

Helping: Hanks was the first celebrity to share publicly in March that he had tested positive for COVID-19. He is donating plasma containing antibodies to help researchers develop a vaccine

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