[Delivery Tips]Italics: Phrases that need to be said with emphasis (or in a slow, deliberate way)Welcome, everybody. Thank you for being here and sharing David’s 80th birthday celebration. I must say that I feel 50 years younger as I gaze around the room [pause for laughter]! OK, maybe 10 years younger.[Facing David]So here we are together to celebrate you and your 80 well-lived, well-loved years – golden years full of energy, achievement, commitment, joie de vivre, adventure, fulfillment in marriage and family life and happiness. And you’ve seen sadness and tough times too, finding the inner strength to rise above them.David, we hold you in our hearts for not what you’ve done for us but for the way you have done it. Being yourself. Being gutsy. Being honest. Being kind. Working hard. Never giving up. Your wisdom, your experience, your insight, your authenticity — are inspiring.Today, we offer you our gratitude and our loving best wishes. Personally, I feel very privileged to have a friend like you in my life for so long. You’ve been an amazing role model, supporter, adviser, confidant and, when there’s a game of Rummy Cube afoot, a worthy opponent. I can only hope that the rest of my journey on Earth is as full of love, joy, happiness and travel as yours.David, all your family and friends here tonight pay tribute to the wonderful, generous and loving person you are.[Facing the birthday party guests]Before we toast this incredible man, I would like to leave you with a poem by Helen Steiner Rice that I adapted to capture what makes David so special as a friend.[Turning back to David]David, your friendship is a golden chain, The links are shared moments so dear, And like a rare and precious jewel, I treasure you more each year. Your friendship is clasped together firmly, With a love that’s deep and true, And it’s rich with happy memories, and fond recollections, too. Time can’t destroy its beauty, For, as long as memory lives, Years can’t erase the pleasure, That the joy of your friendship gives. For your friendship is a priceless gift That can’t be bought or sold, But to have a friend like you, Is worth far more than gold.And the golden chain of friendship, Is a strong and blessed tie, Binding kindred hearts together, As the years go passing by. [Facing the birthday party guests]Now, ladies and gentlemen, please raise your glasses and join me in a toast to this remarkable man [raising your glass towards your David, so others will follow you].[Facing David]David, may your 80th birthday be as unforgettable as your first kiss, your wedding day or the birth of your children and grandchildren (in other words, as unforgettable as you).* Not his real name.