Bill O’Brien wowed everyone one year ago at THON 2012 and came back for an encore performance today that was even more epic. After not knowing a lot of the finer details about the dance marathon last year, O’Brien did some research including learning about the beginning of the Four Diamonds Fund with Charles, Irma, and Christopher Millard.
Below is a large excerpt from his short but passionate remarks.
I was here a year ago, and I was a rookie, and I didn’t know too much about it [THON]. I took the last year, and I thought a lot about it because I knew I’d be back. I read about THON. I have to first say the families and most importantly the children are a tremendous inspiration to us as Penn State. I also read about Charles and Irma Millard. To me, that is what Penn State is all about. Courage, honesty, wisdom, and strength. If there is one thing I learned in the last year, that is what we as a student body and a university are all about. People thank me all the time, but I thank them because to me this is the greatest university in the country, in the world, because of days like today.
Before exiting the stage, O’Brien offered some motivational words comparing the final three hours of THON to the fourth quarter of a football game, encouraging the dancers to finish strong. After a loud WE ARE… chant, he demanded better, and the filled to capacity Bryce Jordan Center willingly obliged.