E-mail from Carrie Hessler-Radelet (Western Samoa 1981-83) Acting Peace Corps Director on Honoring Ambassador Chris Stevents

[On Friday I received the following e-mail from the Acting Director of the Peace Corps Carrie Hessler-Radelet concerning honoring Ambassador Chris Stevens. She asked me to share it with all of you who read our blog items. John Coyne]

November 30, 2012

Dear Members of the Peace Corps Family:

I recently met with Ambassador Chris Stevens’s sister, Anne, to offer condolences and support on behalf of the Peace Corps community.  Her graciousness and her desire to help further the important bridge-building work of her brother is both moving and inspiring.

Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet

Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet

In response to your petition, I committed to keeping you informed about the dedication of the Ambassador Stevens photo in History Hall of Peace Corps headquarters in Washington, D.C.  We were originally thinking that we would have a dedication ceremony in mid-December at the same time as the State Department memorial service for Ambassador Stevens.  We heard from Anne Stevens yesterday that the State Department service will take place in May 2013, when the Secretary of State will dedicate a star to Ambassador Stevens in a special ceremony.  Therefore, she requested that we wait until May for our History Hall dedication ceremony so that the Stevens family can attend the event.  We will provide you with further information in the new year.

In the meantime, Anne Stevens has asked us to share the following message:

“Our family is touched by the outpouring of support from the RPCV community, and we are hearing a common thread – that RPCVs want to do something to honor Chris’s commitment and contributions to cross-cultural understanding. While there are many ways to further the ideals of peace and understanding that were so important to Chris and, inarguably, to all of you who decided to serve your country in the Peace Corps, our family has an “ask” for you: Please make a pledge to share a piece of the knowledge and understanding you gained as a Peace Corps Volunteer with our young people here in the U.S. Whether you served in Morocco or Burkina Faso, Jordan or Mongolia, Peru or Vanuatu – you have a gift that you can pass along to those of us who will never know firsthand the men and the women and the children of the places you served. Whether you speak in a classroom, a library, a board room, or a coffee shop, we hope you will get out and do this one thing to help strengthen our human connections and promote a better understanding of other cultures.

We have learned from the Peace Corps that Peace Corps Week 2013 will take place February 24 – March 2, 2013. While any time of year is a good time to pay peace forward, we hope you will pledge to make your mark on bridging the human divide by committing to a Third Goal activity here: https://www.peacecorps.gov/resources/returned/thirdgoal/register/.”

We are so grateful for the Stevens family’s support for Peace Corps’ Third Goal and hope that all of you who are interested in honoring Ambassador Stevens will consider how you can carry out his legacy during Peace Corps week in late February – and beyond.

Thanks for your continued commitment to the Peace Corps.

Warmest regards,

Carrie

Carrie Hessler-Radelet
Acting Peace Corps Director
RPCV Western Samoa ’81 – ’83

“Peace requires the simple but powerful recognition that what we have in common as human beings is more important and crucial than what divides us.” – Sargent Shriver

www.peacecorps.gov

4 Comments

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  • Thanks, John, for posting Carrie’s update. Thanks, Carrie, for sharing Ann Stevens’ message to the RPCVs who petitioned to honor Chris Stevens’ life and ultimate sacrifice by having Peace Corps dedicate prominent space at HQ.Two other things might add to the special nature of the dedication ceremony special:1) Having Secretary of State Hillary Clinton join us at the ceremony (regardless of her official government status in May 2013); and2) Reaching our goal of 1,000 signatures on the petition by encouraging at least 65 more RPCVs to sign on. The petition remains reachable by clicking on:http://peacecorpsworldwide.org/going/

  • This has brought me more than just tears…I am so very proud of Carrie’s message and that of the Steven’s family…Peace Corps is doing what Ambassador Steven’s would want. I am proud to be a Peace Corps Volunteer!
    Bob Arias
    Peace Corps Response Volunteer/Colombia 2011-2013

  • John, thanks for Carrie’s update. Thanks, Carrie, for sharing Ann Stevens’ note to the RPCVs who petitioned to commemorate Chris Stevens’ life and ultimate sacrifice by dedicating prominent space at HQ in his honor.Two things might add to the special nature of the dedication ceremony special:1) Having Secretary of State Hillary Clinton join us at the ceremony (regardless of her official government status in May 2013); and2) Reaching our goal of 1,000 signatures on the petition by encouraging 65 more RPCVs to sign on. The petition can be reached by clicking on:http://peacecorpsworldwide.org/going/

  • Again, thanks John. You provide a link to a lot of worthwhile ideas and opportunities. Have a blessed holiday and New Year.

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