Sargent Shriver commemorated by son in new book

(Courtesy of Henry Holt and Co.)

WASHINGTON – Sargent Shriver was a father of five kids, married 56 years, with nearly a century of dedication to helping the downtrodden.

Now Mark Shriver has written a book about his late father.

The book is called “A Good Man: Rediscovering my father, Sargent Shriver”

“He was pretty much the same in the 40s and 50s as he was in the 60s, 70s and 80s, spreading Special Olympics around the world with my mom, creating Best Buddies with my brother Anthony,” Shriver says.

Some remember Sargent Shriver only as the founder of the Peace Corps. But his son speaks of a long life dedicated to social justice.

“He was a guy that really believed in the social justice call of the gospels, that we really needed to work with the poor and those that are disenfranchised,” he says.

Shriver says his dad’s entire 95-year career showed that optimism.

“I told a story in the book about my brother getting busted for possession of marijuana at the point where my dad was thinking of running for vice president or even president or governor of Maryland,” he says.

Instead of yelling and screaming at him, Shriver says his dad told his brother that he was a good kid and that he would support Shriver’s brother.

“He was a father that gave unconditional love and forgiveness, not at his expense and how much it came to play on his reputation, but he was worried more about his kids,” Shriver says. “I think that was a really powerful lesson.”

WTOP’s Rosemary Frisino Toohey contributed to this report.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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