A Simple Legacy Now Moves into the 2nd and 3rd Generation with Conviction

As you may know, an American icon, Pete Seeger, passed away a little over a month ago at age 94. You may remember him as a singer and writer of protest songs such as If I had a Hammer and Where Have All the Flowers Gone. You may remember him as a political activist, and Communist sympathizer who was blacklisted in the 1950s. You may remember him as a member of the Weavers, a celebrated vocal group who sold an estimated 4 million records.

What you may not know about Pete Seeger is that he saw himself as a storyteller. He dropped out of Harvard in 1938 where he had planned on becoming a journalist and took his banjo on the road. He met Woody Guthrie in 1940. From him he learned how storytelling through song can showcase life and powerfully bind people to a cause. Seeger and Guthrie worked their craft as they hitchhiked and rode freight trains. During their travels Seeger met the people who carried and sang songs they had learned from their parents and grandparents. Seeger was getting the education he thought he would enjoy but couldn’t find at Harvard.

About five years ago Pete said: “My job is to show folks there’s a lot of good music in this world, and if used right it may help to save the planet.” Fifteen years earlier he said: “The key to the future of the world is finding the optimistic stories and letting them be known.”

Pete found his purpose and stayed with it. He did not feel the need nor the draw for the comforts in life. He always lived modestly. And as icing on the cake, he shared his legacy with his family which included his wife, children, grandchildren and god children. They now build on it through the power of doing something beyond oneself and expanding the notion of connection though community. The family has become more tightly knit as a result of Pete’s loving communication imparting of his purpose and mission.

From this legacy story, my question for you is: what are you doing to bring meaning to your family mission that future generations continue? How is your family sharing in that development in a way that keeps them harmonious and united while also living independent lives?

Let me know by writing a comment below.  I’d love to hear from you.

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