Craig Roosevelt (1975)

Disclaimer: The following was transcribed from an article in the Capper Foundation Archives. The choice of words used at the time this was written may not reflect current Capper Foundation inclusive language and views.

Craig Roosevelt (1975)

Craig Roosevelt didn’t get to graduate with his class, but more than 150 people attended a special graduation ceremony just for him at Stormont-Vail Regional Medical Center recently.

Roosevelt, 21 has muscular dystrophy and has attended the Capper Foundation since 1975.  In December he experienced severe respiratory difficulty and was admitted to Stormont-Vail.  He has been unable to return to the Capper Foundation because of his need to be on a ventilator.

Roosevelt had been looking forward to graduation.  The special graduation ceremony was held at the hospital’s Pozez Education Center.  Former Secretary of State Jack Brier delivered the graduation speech.

“Craig was very, very pleased with the graduation,” said Dorene Craig, nursing supervisor on the cardiopulmonary unit where Roosevelt is hospitalized.  “I think he was overwhelmed to say the least.  It was very emotional for him.”

Classmates, friends, Capper Foundation staff, Stormont-Vail staff, community leaders and Topeka public school officials attended the ceremony and reception.  Roosevelt’s diploma is from Topeka West High School.

A Capper official said that Roosevelt “is a courageous young man who carries on his life under the most difficult of circumstances.”

Dorene Craig agreed:  “He’s remarkable in that he’s managed to persevere through all this.  He amazes our staff with his ability to hang in there.  Our staff has sort of adopted him, because he is so special.”