Hundred gathered at Bill Wilson's grave on Sunday, June 10the for the 77th anniversary of the movement he began. The Fix covered this story, and this is a recap of their piece.
Bill Wilson is known as "Bill W." among the legions of Alcoholics Anonymous. He founded AA in the 1930's with "Dr. Bob" Smith. The two founded this program on the principle that helping others to stay sober, they could stay sober themselves. Anonymity is one of the foundation's 12 Traditions, "ever reminding (members) to place principles before personalities." Although meetings are self-supported and autonomous, Bill W. is considered a hero by many in the recovery community.
Each year, on the first Sunday of June, hundreds gather at his grave, which is located near his birthplace in East Dorset, VT, to pay their respects and express gratitude for what he has given the world. In the last eight decades, AA has grown into a worldwide movement with millions of members.
Although AA has some skeptics, many rely on it to stay clean and sober, and rebuild their lives. One member at the gathering this weekend said, "I have great respect for Bill and everything he's done. It's not just not drinking; it's about living a different life, becoming a different human being." One event organizer claimed that people leave notes at Bill's grave throughout the year, often times even leaving their sobriety chips.
This weekend's event opened similar to many AA meetings, as members read AA's 12 Steps and 12 Traditions, followed by introductions. Next, they followed up with the Serenity Prayer. About 200 people gathered for this anniversary.
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Image courtesy of The Fix and Photo Via.