Detroit - A black cap and tassel sat atop Miles Levin's shiny head. The chemotherapy robbed him of his hair some time ago.
Though he was pale and his slender frame showed through his black robe, Levin's strength was apparent as he gave the senior farewell address to the graduates of the Cranbrook Schools Class of 2007 today at Christ Church at Cranbrook.
Levin 18, of Bloomfield Hills, has a rare form of muscle cancer called rhabdomyosarcoma, and has gained much notoriety from his blog, "Levin Story," about his life and experiences in fighting cancer.
He urged his class to make the most of their lot in life, and do what they can to help others along the way.
"Being an operative for the greater good is rarely fun or easy, but it is gratifying," he said. "Where we draw the line is both personal and circumstantial, but I beg you give your life some reflection. ... We cannot be blamed for the things we cannot control, but that does not excuse us for not taking control of the things we can."
Former ABC News co-anchorman Bob Woodruff, who was critically injured in Iraq in 2006 in a roadside bomb explosion, gave the commencement addresses for the morning ceremony. A 1979 graduate and Bloomfield Township native, Woodruff urged students to make the most of their Cranbrook educations.
"All those years ago, I wondered what is that aim high statue on campus," he said. ... "It's not about the hardness of the arrow or the strength of the bow. It's the place and the target you decide to shoot at. ... It is in your ultimate impact and victory. So aim high my friends."
Contact KRISTEN JORDAN SHAMUS at 313-222-5997 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By KRISTEN JORDAN SHAMUS, DET. FREE PRESS EDUCATION WRITER