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.
A boisterous crowd of thousands attended the commencement ceremony for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. College Preparatory High School, a school that garnered headlines when teenager Hadiya Pendleton was fatally shot on the way home from class. Days earlier she had been in Washington, D.C., to perform with her drill team during President Barack Obama’s second term inauguration festivities.
Pendleton would have graduated Tuesday. A chair — draped in purple fabric, her favorite color; a feather boa; and a bouquet of flowers — was reserved in her honor among her cap-and-gown-clad classmates. Her family was presented with an engraved class ring.