50th Anniversary Keynote Address


Brother John Tizen (1942-2014) ’64 ΣΛ252, delivered these remarks as the Keynote Address during our 50th Anniversary celebration in October 2008. 

Good evening Fellow Brothers, family members and other guests.  I would like to begin by saying Thank You for the opportunity to be here tonight and speak to you.   Those of you who know me, know I am a man of few words, so I will try to be brief with my comments.

I have been truly blessed by being part of this outstanding group.  When I began my association with Sigma Omega Tau in Winter of 1963, I was like any other college student looking for fun, fellowship and a place to belong.  I had no idea what the future would bring. Little did I know that 45 years later I would still be part of a group that has been such an influence on my life.  This brotherhood has a strength rarely seen in a group as varied in background and age as the brothers of Lambda Chi.

If you know anything about my struggle with Multiple Sclerosis and related illnesses, you will understand when I say I would not be here tonight if it were not for the caring friendships begun here at Virginia Tech as a part of this group.  These guys have taken care of me in more ways than you can ever imagine through their friendship, counsel, financial support and love.  Yes, love, because much of what they have done for me has been out of the love they have for me and each other.  When the Hokies played in bowl games, including the National Championship in New Orleans, I was there.  For years I attended Atlanta Falcon games, including the Super Bowl.  When important events happened in the lives and families of this group, I have been there.  You have allowed me to be part of your families and your lives.  If I were to try and thank each one individually, it would take most of the evening and I still might leave someone out.  Each of you knows who you are.  There is no way I can ever repay you.

None of us know what the future holds as we go through our daily routines.  If we are fortunate enough to be part of a group like Lambda Chi Alpha and participate in the brotherhood, it can make a significant difference in our lives.  I thank God everyday for making you part of my life.  May God bless Virginia Tech, this brotherhood and each of you.

Sigma Beta,

John Tizen

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