Sargent Shriver's Marching Orders: Four Steps to a Life of Public Service
Sargent Shriver, the first Director of the Peace Corps, has died of natural causes in a Washington, D.C., area hospital, according to multiple reports. He was 95.
In early 1961, Shriver was asked by his brother-in-law, President John F. Kennedy, to mold a new agency that would come to symbolize the idealism of the 1960s—the Peace Corps, an organization that has sent thousands of Americans into developing countries to volunteer.
"Over the course of his long and distinguished career, Sargent came to embody the idea of public service,” said President Obama in a statement.
Writing in The Atlantic, Shriver biographer Scott Stossel heaped praise onto the former Vice Presidential candidate and WWII veteran:
Shriver may have helped more people around the world than any twentieth century American who wasn't a president, politician, or Martin Luther King.
In addition to leading the Peace Corps, Shriver also:
—Presided over the Paris Peace Talks on the Vietnam War
—Helped his wife Eunice found the Special Olympics in 1968
“The Peace Corps represents some, if not all, of the best virtues in this society. It stands for everything that America has ever stood for," Shriver once said, according to the Peace Corps website.
Here are four ways—some big, others small—in which you can act today to honor Shriver’s legacy to service: