The Remarkable Years
By Richard Bujaki  

In 1958, I started in Marion College.

I was going to change the world.

I didn't change the world, but I did make a difference.

It has been said that a generation will be judged by what they have accomplished by the time they reach thirty, or the events that influenced and surrounded their lives between high school and thirty. If this be so, then this has to be the most remarkable generation this century has ever seen. No other generation has crammed so many astonishing events into such a short period of time. We made our scratch mark on the tree of life. Looking back, “Our Time” was the best of times to be a teenager. This is the chronicle of events that shaped our generation.

The sixties were the best of times, and the worst of times. It brought out the best and the worst in us. The same generation that gave us, “Burn Baby Burn,” also gave us, “Failure is not an Option!” We went from our darkest hour during the riots, to our finest hour during the Apollo 13 crises. Ordinary people, placed in extraordinary circumstances, took their turn at bat;

And no one struck out.
To start things off, when we were teenagers, we participated in the birth of Rock and Roll. Fifty years later it is still as popular as when we had pimples. No other form of contemporary music this century can boast of this longevity. No other music has so many radio stations dedicated solely to playing, “The Oldies.” Fifty years later, the artist of our youth can still play to sold out audiences, and most of this audience has not even reached thirty!
We all dispersed and went our own ways. Some went to Kent State and some went to Viet Nam. Some went on freedom marches, and some went to the Peace Core. Some went to San Francisco, and some marched in Alabama. Some walked with God. Some walked alone. Some just took the path less traveled. Wherever we went, we made a difference. To understand our generation, you have to understand the 60's.
History recorded our footsteps.
We spoke with one voice.
Some of us became “Hippies” and some of us became activist, but we all became involved. The sixties gave birth to more social involvement then any other decade this century. The sexual revolution found its roots in the sixties.
We saw the birth of Startrek, and 50 years later it is still a viable part of our culture.
The awful pawl of Viet Nam will forever overshadow the decade of the sixties. Not since the Civil War has our nation been so divided over a single military issue. Fifty Five thousand of our generation’s finest were sacrificed because our leaders wanted to save face before pulling out of this un-winnable conflict. They chose politics over peace, while the body count just kept climbing. Like the Civil War, Viet Nam will forever remain a scar until all the generations can no longer remember the pain.
We were there during the early days of the space race when a man would literally strap himself to a rocket, light the fuse, and hang on for dear life. Each launch was an adventure, watched by millions.
The greatest cars the world had ever seen were launched during our generation. Muscle cars and land yachts, funny cars and fast cars. These cars were not just transportation, but rather these cars were an extension of how we felt about ourselves. These cars were immortalized in song and word. No one has ever written a song about a Japanese car, nor have they written a virtuous song about an auto in almost 40 years.
Our generation got together at a place called Woodstock, and the rest is history. Future generations would try in vain to travel the "Hippie Highway" and to imitate and duplicate Woodstock, and they could never understand why they failed. Our Woodstock just happened, it wasn’t planed or choreographed. It was spontaneous and sincere. It was about attitude and a way of life inherent in the psyche of this generation. The sixties were about happenings, and this was just another one of them.
Just when our generation thought they had seen and done it all, and were ready to pass into thirty something. Just when they thought, “It just don’t get no better then this.” The greatest event in the entire history of mankind was about to take place during our watch. This crème deli crème and final chapter was to be our greatest achievement. Up stepped a man who was about to boldly go where no man has gone before. Our nation watched mesmerized as Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, and came back home safely.
This was our generation’s finest hour.


There is only one way to sum up our generation:
We had the right stuff!