An Open Thank You Letter To Hugh O'Brian

An Open Thank You Letter To Hugh O'Brian

Thank you, Hugh.
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Dear Hugh O’Brian;

You changed my life, just like you changed the lives of thousands of individuals across the world; and thousands of hearts are heavy after receiving the news of your passing. Dr. Schweitzer told you, “The most important thing in education is to teach young people to think for themselves.” You took those fifteen words and created the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Organization: an organization that has changed the world through enthusiasm, love and service.

I think I speak on behalf of thousands of people when I say we will make it our mission to continue carrying out your vision for the world, because we have adapted the same vision. You did not teach us what to think, but you taught us how to think, and because of that the chain reaction you started will never end. A passion like yours does not wither away, but is instead an eternal flame which will live in every heart you touched. You cultivated leaders like no other, and your organization will continue to mold and empower these young people, because your legacy will live on.

The organization you created is anything but an ordinary leadership organization. HOBY has become a safe place for thousands of people, and that alone is an irreplaceable privilege. The environment one is immersed in at a HOBY seminar cannot be found anywhere else on Earth – it is a place full of enthusiasm and passion, hate does not exist, love is given freely and service is valued above all else. This is the environment you created, and this is what we will share with the rest of the world.

You believed in the most “controversial” group of people in the world: young people. You believed in us so much, you dedicated 58 years of your life to cultivating us into the leaders you knew we could be. Thank you for believing in us, investing in us and giving us wings to fly.

The amount of thanks you deserve is an incomprehensible number which I will never do justice, but I, like many others, owe so much of the life I live to you. Without you, so many of the people in my life whom I love unconditionally would be strangers, I would not have found the place I belong, I would not see the world through the beautiful lens of which I now experience life – I simply would not be anything like the person I am today without you, Hugh. I thank you with all my heart for changing my life in the best ways possible. I hope to make you proud by changing the lives of others in the ways you changed mine.

“I believe every person is created as the steward of his or her own destiny with great power for a specific purpose: to share with others, through service, a reverence for life in a spirit of love,”-Hugh O’Brian. This is the legacy we will continue, these are the words we will live by and you will always be our hero. God bless you, and may you rest in peace.



All my love and HOBY Hugs,

A passionate HOBY volunteer

Cover Image Credit: Emalie Shaffer

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Thank you for not only being there through the bad, but also celebrating my victories with me. I can always look forward to telling you good news because I know you'll be happy right along with me.

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This explains itself and I am so grateful for that.

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My Soulmate Isn't My SO Or A Boy Toy, It's My BFF

I've got mine, and she is and will always be the best part of my life.

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When I was in the eighth grade I met my best friend. I did not expect to meet someone that fills all the empty spots in my heart, but she did. I did not know anyone and was new to school and she walked up and began talking to me and it was like an automatic piece to my puzzle that I had been missing for so much of my life. We just fit. We were total opposites, she is outgoing, loud, funny. As where I was shy, quiet, and I certainly could not make a whole room laugh like she did. Ever. She was everything I needed and more, she was my soulmate.

I know that sounds cliché and you're probably thinking I am over exaggerating but please hear me out. My soulmate was definitely not a boy. Trust me, I've been there and I have done that. No boy could ever have as much of my heart as my best friend does. While having someone love you and experience life with is fun, it has been so much more fulfilling for it to be my best friend, my gal pal, my sister. Through junior high, high school, and choosing to go to the same university together, we had the best friend part down.

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So soulmate, thank you. From the bottom of my heart I thank you, for being you. I thank God for placing you in my life exactly when I needed you. You are beauty, grace, and a lover of everyone. You think you're lucky, but I know that I am blessed for you being in my life. I am a better person because of you. I step out of my comfort zone more because of you. I love people and things more fiercely because of you.

My advice to you all, find YOUR soul mate. Whether it is a boy or a girl, a soul mate is needed to get through life. I've got mine, and she is and will always be the best part of my life. If you have one, make sure you hang on tight, as they get you through this crazy thing we call life. To my soul mate, I love you.

Cover Image Credit:

Daryn Allen

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