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Tom Hanks Delivers Moving Virtual Speech To Graduating Class

Tom Hanks Delivers Moving Virtual Speech To Graduating Class

Tom Hanks has given a moving speech for a university's Class of 2020 as part of their virtual graduation ceremony, calling them 'the chosen ones'.

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With many events cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, university students aren't getting the send-off they envisaged right now.

But the graduating class at Wright State University in Ohio were given a nice boost from none other than Oscar-winning actor Tom Hanks, who delivered an inspiring speech to them via video message.

His five-minute message was played during the virtual ceremony held for students graduating from the university's Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Pictures on 2 May.

In the moving video, Hanks paid tribute to the students, who he dubbed 'the chosen ones', as they've had to make their way through the challenges of the pandemic, which he said was 'the great reset, the great reboot'.

Tom Hanks made a moving speech for graduates at Wright State University. Credit: PA
Tom Hanks made a moving speech for graduates at Wright State University. Credit: PA
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He said: "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."

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Hanks, who recently beat coronavirus, continued: "You will talk of those earlier years in your lives just that way: 'Well, that was back before the Covid-19. That was before the great pandemic'.

"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."

Hanks and wife Rita Wilson recently contracted and beat coronavirus. Credit: PA
Hanks and wife Rita Wilson recently contracted and beat coronavirus. Credit: PA

Explaining how the students have 'made the sacrifices that have saved lives', Hanks said things would not be the same post-coronavirus.

He continued: "But your 'after' is not going to look the same as your 'during' or as your 'before'.

"You'll have made it through the 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.

"You have not returned to the starting line like all us generations before you; you're just approaching it now for the first time. You've just arrived."

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."

Blimey, I'm not crying, YOU are.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Entertainment, Celebrity, Coronavirus, US News, tom hanks

Jess Hardiman

Jess is a journalist at LADbible who graduated from Manchester University with a degree in Film Studies, English Language and Linguistics - indecisiveness at its finest, right there. She also works for FOODbible and its sister page Seitanists, which are both a safe haven for her to channel a love for homemade pasta, fennel and everything else in between. You can contact Jess at [email protected]