I want to tell you about my friend, Harold Byrd.

I met Harold for the first time on a group trip to Cannes in 2000. He and his brother Bob Byrd became quick friends with me there. The laughs we shared will last a lifetime.

If you have ever been to a Tiger basketball game then you have seen the Byrd Brothers in action. There’s not a referee or an opposing coach that hasn’t caught their good-natured ribbing. Harold has given back to the University of Memphis ten times over and is as great of an ambassador for the school.

Harold’s whole life has involved the Bank of Bartlett. He and his brothers started the bank. Harold has been a success in business and in politics. In 2008, his successes were put to the test.

At a routine check-up with his doctor, it was discovered that he had colorectal cancer. That must have come as a complete shock considering how well he’s always taken care of himself with exercise and diet. Harold’s intensive treatment spanned over 30 weeks.

The great news is after all the treatments, he beat his cancer. Harold has made a full recovery, his life is back to normal and he is still going strong.

The reason we honor Harold with our event is that he is a shining example for all successful people to never take their eyes off of their health. You can be blessed with all the money in the world but if you are not taking care of yourself, what do you really have? Harold went through his treatment and still continued to smile. He showed others his personal strength and how to get through treatment.

I am so thankful that this city has such a shining example like Harold Byrd. You can get knocked down, but you can always get up. My friend not only got up but he conquered! We are humbled to be in your presence my friend! Congratulations on this honor that you so richly deserve! Your example saves lives. There’s no greater gift you can give anyone else.