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Hadiya Pendleton

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  • 3 VIP speakers, 8 speeches: What will the grads remember?

    Graduation season is winding down. The caps and gowns are being tossed aside, the diplomas propped on the mantle. Already, memories of commencement speeches are getting fuzzy, even some of those delivered by big-name speakers. But among the eight commencement addresses given this year by three of the biggest names — President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joe Biden — a few moments stood out that may last a little longer. A look back:
  • Michelle Obama honors Chicago grads, slain classmate Hadiya Pendleton

    Michelle Obama honors Chicago grads, slain classmate Hadiya Pendleton
    An empty chair in the third row, adorned with a lavender cloth, purple ribbon and fresh flowers, marked the spot where Hadiya Pendleton would have sat at her high school graduation Tuesday night. The chair was one of the ways former classmates...

    First lady notes personal struggles in Chicago graduation

    First lady Michelle Obama drew on her hometown connections and personal struggles from college and the White House Tuesday during a Chicago high school graduation speech to the classmates of an honor student gunned down in 2013 near the Obama family home....

    Michelle Obama's messages echo in South Side students she visited

    Michelle Obama's messages echo in South Side students she visited
    For a while, Thomas Cunningham kept the personal note from first lady Michelle Obama tucked away in a file cabinet in his grandmother's bedroom. A picture of the teenager with the first lady's hands resting on his shoulders still hangs on the wall....

    Gun violence awareness: Hadiya Pendleton 'would've been 18,' her mom notes

     Gun violence awareness: Hadiya Pendleton 'would've been 18,' her mom notes
    Cleo Pendleton stood before dozens of people at Harold Washington Park, expressing gratitude for the groundswell in Chicago that made Tuesday a day of nationwide gun violence awareness. She also wondered openly about the life and death that inspired it....