By Justice Sandra Day O'Connor
Acceptance speech for becoming the fifth Honorary Reagan Fellow at Eureka College
April 9, 2013
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Sandra Day O'Connor [automatically transcribed, may contain inaccuracies]
Thank you so much. It is really a delight for me to be able to come here to this place to the place where Ronald Reagan went to college, to receive the award, and to be part of this institution. And I'm just, I wouldn't have traded this for anything. It's really wonderful. Me, we all know how special Ronald Reagan was. And now I see part of what made him such. I've enjoyed today so much seeing and meeting a number of the students here at the college. I've been impressed by them. They're wonderful. They're a delight. And it just, this is a special place and you're carrying out very good work in helping these students start their lives in a way that will serve as an example on a pattern for others to follow them in due course. I'm really happy to be here. Now I want to get to know my fellow honorary. Why do we call them fellows? fellows? Baron, get some more girls in there.
Anyway, it will be fun for the year in the years ahead to meet some of my colleagues and Miss BF. And I look forward to it. I've just welcomed the remarks that I've been able to hear while being here. And to meet the people I've met. I've always admired some of the things that are accomplished in this part of the world, your great companies that are here. We have a, why do we call it, the company that makes the tractors, Caterpillar? Caterpillar. I grew up on a ranch and we used to have a Caterpillar Tractor. And we had to get a new one occasionally. Not too often, they were too expensive. But they were great. And they, we really needed them because they moved that dirt out of these old washed up tanks that we had with the mud and our masks what we had to do and we clear off the roads and make it passable to keep going up the ranch.
And Caterpillar has been one of America's greatest companies and a great asset in keeping us alive in these dangerous economic times. Caterpillar's been pretty steady, I think, remarkably. So, I like that. And I think Eureka College has been pretty steady. I like that, too. I like the students I've met. And I'm going to get well acquainted with my fellow fellows. And I just thank you, this has been a real treat and I hope to come back because it just couldn't be better.
And I'm awfully glad I came here to receive it to give me a chance to see Eureka, and to get better acquainted with what you're doing. I like it. I like what I've seen. Keep it up like the students now work hard, okay. Work hard. You can do most anything in life if you set your mind to it. You know, get rid of the distractions and work on it and follow your instinct to make a life for yourself in an area that you care about. Do something worth doing and work hard at it. It makes your life worthwhile.
So thanks for having me here. Thanks for making me an honorary member. And I look forward to seeing many of you through the years again and again. Thanks a lot.