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You will prepare and deliver a special occasion/commemorative speech. You may select any of the types provided in the Special Occasion chapter in the textbook. These may include tributes, toasts, commencement ceremonies, and eulogies. Do not worry about your class being your audience and appealing to them in this speech; you will create this imaginary situation and an imaginary audience (it could be at an award’s ceremony, a father’s day brunch, Christmas, a funeral, etc.).

Sample Commemorative Speech Outline- Courtesy of Jody Littleton
A Tribute to My Dad
Introduction:
Attention getter: “He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” This
quote from Clarence Budington Kelland, author of 60 novels, explains how my father has taught
me so much in life.
Topic/occasion: On this Father’s Day I want to say “Thank you” to my dad by sharing some
reasons why I admire him so much and how he is an inspiration in my life
Preview of Main Points: Thanks to my dad, I learned to love, listen, and laugh
Transition: Dad always taught by example.
I. My father taught me to love, by learning to love
A. Theodore Hesburgh said “The most important thing a father can do for his children is
to love their mother,” and this is exactly what my father has done.
1. During their 21 years of marriage I know they have experienced good times
and bad, have had ups and downs (antithesis) but in my 19 years I have never seen my
parents truly fight.
a. When they disagree they talk about it calmly and problem solve.
b. If they can’t then they agree to disagree and compromise.
2. They have done nothing but show a love for life and for each other.
3. My father always does little things for my mom to show his love such as kiss
her every morning before he leaves, always complements her when she gets her hair cut,
makes dinner for her when she is running late.
B. My parent’s love of life is shown in the many friends that they both have.
1. Our house is filled with friends on the weekend enjoying brats and beer while
competing in a friendly bags game.
2. My dad gets together with friends and has a jam session with a variety of
instruments ranging from guitars to spoons and everyone taking turns singing.
C. Not only has my father taught me to love others but also to love what you do.
1. The first few years of my life I grew up watching my father play drums in a
band that played usually 6 nights a week.
2. Dad’s passion for music is the best example I have ever seen in my life for
someone truly loving what they do.
3. Around the time I was 6 years old, my mother had asked my dad to settle down
and focus on the family.
4. As much as my dad loved his music, he thought that my mom was right and it
was best to settle in at home rather than to be traveling 6 days a week.
D. My father’s love for friends, and family taught me what is important in life; it is not
the material possessions you have but who you have to share your life with.
Transition: My dad also knows that to love, you have to hear other people out
II. My father taught me to listen by learning to listen.
A. One of the biggest things dad told me you can do to become a better person is to learn
how to listen intently without judging.
1. When my dad listens he is like a calm pool of water. The water itself does not
move or make sound. It absorbs all the sounds and actions around it.
2. His eye contact, facial expression, body language all tell his listener that he is
fully engaged.
3. I remember my dad always listening to me as a kid. I would tell him every
detail of my day which I am sure was not that exciting and he would listen like I was the
most important person in the world.
B. I have seen this in practice with my father and have also seen the results as he has
become one of the most respected men around my home town.
1. People like my dad because he gives them his full attention.
2. People respect my dad because he accepts them no matter what their opinions.
3. People listen to my dad because he takes the time to listen to them.
C. My father’s ability to listen taught me that there is a reason we have two ears and one
mouth — we should listen twice as much as we talk.
Transition: Of course, one of my favorite things to do with dad is laugh
III. My father taught me to laugh by laughing hard, and heartily.
A. It has been said that “a day without laughter is a day wasted.”
1. This is very true as one big thing I have noticed is that human existence is full
of difficulty and dilemma
a. The ability to laugh at your problems or even at yourself from time to
time is one of the best ways to keep your spirits up in tough times.
2. My father has shown me this as he works on our farm. If you have ever heard
of Murphy’s Law, which says that anything that can go wrong will, you can
get a good mental picture of our farm.
a. The tractor breaks down in the middle of harvest season, the fence
breaks and our cows get out in the middle of the night, and one of our
cows gives birth on the coldest night of the year.
b. Through all of these experiences and many more my father has always
kept a positive attitude by laughing it off then going on to fix the
tractor, catch the cows, repair the fence, and play nurse to our cow in
subzero weather.
B. My father loves to create laughter by making jokes (not always good ones but he
loves to make them!)
1. When I was a kid my father was always telling me knock knock jokes and we
used to compete for the silliest.
a. For example one of them I remember was: Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Who.
Who who?
Is there an owl in here?
2. As I got older I would hear my dad laughing with his friends over the jokes he
and his friends would come up with.
a. Since many of them were not PG rated I will not repeat them here!
C. My father’s laughter and easy going attitude taught me to not take life to seriously
and look for ways to laugh.
Transition: It must be clear then, that all the important things I learned from my dad
Conclusion:
Anne Sexton said that “It doesn’t matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was.”
With this powerful thought in mind I am glad to say that my father has been a very highly
respected man who has taught me three big things: to love, to listen, and to laugh.
Thank you Dad.
Works Cited List goes here
Sample Commemorative Speech Outline- Courtesy of Jody Littleton
A Tribute to My Dad
Introduction:
Attention getter: “He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” This
quote from Clarence Budington Kelland, author of 60 novels, explains how my father has taught
me so much in life.
Topic/occasion: On this Father’s Day I want to say “Thank you” to my dad by sharing some
reasons why I admire him so much and how he is an inspiration in my life
Preview of Main Points: Thanks to my dad, I learned to love, listen, and laugh
Transition: Dad always taught by example.
I. My father taught me to love, by learning to love
A. Theodore Hesburgh said “The most important thing a father can do for his children is
to love their mother,” and this is exactly what my father has done.
1. During their 21 years of marriage I know they have experienced good times
and bad, have had ups and downs (antithesis) but in my 19 years I have never seen my
parents truly fight.
a. When they disagree they talk about it calmly and problem solve.
b. If they can’t then they agree to disagree and compromise.
2. They have done nothing but show a love for life and for each other.
3. My father always does little things for my mom to show his love such as kiss
her every morning before he leaves, always complements her when she gets her hair cut,
makes dinner for her when she is running late.
B. My parent’s love of life is shown in the many friends that they both have.
1. Our house is filled with friends on the weekend enjoying brats and beer while
competing in a friendly bags game.
2. My dad gets together with friends and has a jam session with a variety of
instruments ranging from guitars to spoons and everyone taking turns singing.
C. Not only has my father taught me to love others but also to love what you do.
1. The first few years of my life I grew up watching my father play drums in a
band that played usually 6 nights a week.
2. Dad’s passion for music is the best example I have ever seen in my life for
someone truly loving what they do.
3. Around the time I was 6 years old, my mother had asked my dad to settle down
and focus on the family.
4. As much as my dad loved his music, he thought that my mom was right and it
was best to settle in at home rather than to be traveling 6 days a week.
D. My father’s love for friends, and family taught me what is important in life; it is not
the material possessions you have but who you have to share your life with.
Transition: My dad also knows that to love, you have to hear other people out
II. My father taught me to listen by learning to listen.
A. One of the biggest things dad told me you can do to become a better person is to learn
how to listen intently without judging.
1. When my dad listens he is like a calm pool of water. The water itself does not
move or make sound. It absorbs all the sounds and actions around it.
2. His eye contact, facial expression, body language all tell his listener that he is
fully engaged.
3. I remember my dad always listening to me as a kid. I would tell him every
detail of my day which I am sure was not that exciting and he would listen like I was the
most important person in the world.
B. I have seen this in practice with my father and have also seen the results as he has
become one of the most respected men around my home town.
1. People like my dad because he gives them his full attention.
2. People respect my dad because he accepts them no matter what their opinions.
3. People listen to my dad because he takes the time to listen to them.
C. My father’s ability to listen taught me that there is a reason we have two ears and one
mouth — we should listen twice as much as we talk.
Transition: Of course, one of my favorite things to do with dad is laugh
III. My father taught me to laugh by laughing hard, and heartily.
A. It has been said that “a day without laughter is a day wasted.”
1. This is very true as one big thing I have noticed is that human existence is full
of difficulty and dilemma
a. The ability to laugh at your problems or even at yourself from time to
time is one of the best ways to keep your spirits up in tough times.
2. My father has shown me this as he works on our farm. If you have ever heard
of Murphy’s Law, which says that anything that can go wrong will, you can
get a good mental picture of our farm.
a. The tractor breaks down in the middle of harvest season, the fence
breaks and our cows get out in the middle of the night, and one of our
cows gives birth on the coldest night of the year.
b. Through all of these experiences and many more my father has always
kept a positive attitude by laughing it off then going on to fix the
tractor, catch the cows, repair the fence, and play nurse to our cow in
subzero weather.
B. My father loves to create laughter by making jokes (not always good ones but he
loves to make them!)
1. When I was a kid my father was always telling me knock knock jokes and we
used to compete for the silliest.
a. For example one of them I remember was: Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Who.
Who who?
Is there an owl in here?
2. As I got older I would hear my dad laughing with his friends over the jokes he
and his friends would come up with.
a. Since many of them were not PG rated I will not repeat them here!
C. My father’s laughter and easy going attitude taught me to not take life to seriously
and look for ways to laugh.
Transition: It must be clear then, that all the important things I learned from my dad
Conclusion:
Anne Sexton said that “It doesn’t matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was.”
With this powerful thought in mind I am glad to say that my father has been a very highly
respected man who has taught me three big things: to love, to listen, and to laugh.
Thank you Dad.
Works Cited List goes here

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