Barack Obama praised his mother in a recent Instagram post, which included a photo of her carrying his younger self: “My mother, Ann Dunham, was strong, smart, and marched to her own beat.”
Stanley Anne Dunham did not doubt that her son would become any less of the man he dreamed of being. Sadly, she was no longer around to see the day he reached his dream and made history as the first African-American President of the United States.
Recently, Barack Obama paid tribute to his late mother in an Instagram post that was accompanied by an old photo of Dunham carrying her son on her lap, while both smiled at the camera.
Barack Obama during the Obama Foundation Summit on the campus of the Illinois Institute of Technology on October 29, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. | Source: Getty Images
Obama had nothing but kind words of praise for his mom, who taught him and his sister, Maya, about morals, values, diversity, acceptance, and respect. She believed that helping others rise instead of watching them fall made a person powerful. He wrote:
“[...] She was always certain that in the face of justice and humanity’s moral primal impulses, logic and progress would always prevail.”
Dunham was a principled woman who sought the best for her children and raised them to be the best they could. She was a young mother, pregnant at 17 with Obama, whose father, Barack Obama Sr., hailed from Kenya.
Before her death due to ovarian cancer, she was awarded a Ph. D. in Anthropology from the University of Hawaii.
The former President was born and raised in Hawaii for the first few years of his life, sadly, without his father, who divorced Dunham in 1964. Two years later, she married an Indonesian native, Lolo Soetoro, who made them move to his country soon after.
In Indonesia, Obama attended school and learned English with the persistence of his mother, believing that such language skills would lead to great opportunities in college and beyond.
Barack Obama during the Bits & Pretzels meetup on September 29, 2019 in Munich, Germany. | Source: Getty Images
Obama moved back to Hawaii after four years and was raised by his grandparents. Still, Dunham thought about her son, worked hard for his education, and returned a few times to be with him.
Obama achieved what his mother hoped for him -- a good education and a bright future. However, she was no longer alive when he made his most significant achievement yet, winning the 2008 Presidential Election.
Barack Obama and Michelle Obama embrace each other at a rally April 22, 2008 in Evansville, Indiana. | Source: Getty Images
Dunham passed away in 1995, at the age of 52, and a few days short of her 53rd birthday. Before her death due to ovarian cancer, she was awarded a Ph. D. in Anthropology from the University of Hawaii.
She dedicated much of her career studying blacksmiths in Indonesia, where she resided, and wrote over a thousand pages long dissertation. Her legacy and life lessons live on through her successful children.
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