By Holly Gatling, Executive Director, South Carolina Citizens for Life
The Helen Boyle Lauinger Memorial Life Center, the new headquarters of the National Right to Life Committee, was dedicated Thursday, January 9, 2020, in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, with numerous members of Miss Lauinger’s family present along with NRLC officers and NRLC staff members.
NRLC Vice President Anthony (Tony) Lauinger, one of Miss Lauinger’s living siblings, thanked Helen’s sisters, Fran and Mary, brothers Phil and Frank, and her 25 nieces and nephews who made the purchase of the three-story, 14,000 square-foot building possible.
The large plaque with bronze lettering located in the main lobby of the building honoring Helen Boyle Lauinger reads: “Given by her sisters and brother, nieces and nephews in loving memory of her unrivaled devotion to children and her unwavering defense of that magnificent little masterpiece of God’s creation – the innocent, helpless, living child waiting to be born.”
Mr. Lauinger quoted the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights. That among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Mr. Lauinger commented, “Unless life itself is first protected, any other so called right or privilege is meaningless. It is important to note that these words were not listed in some random order. Life was the first right listed by our founding fathers. And it’s interesting to note, too, that they didn’t say we are endowed with the right to life by our Congress, or our President. We’re endowed with the right to life by our creator, by God.”
Mr. Lauinger continued, “Other downtrodden constituencies in our society are able to plead their own case…They can march in the streets or hold a news conference, or meet with their elected officials. The only downtrodden constituency in our society that can do none of these things is the unborn child. The unborn child is totally dependent on what others do, or do not do, on their behalf.”
NRLC President Carol Tobias welcomed the Lauinger family members, officers, and staff as Mr. Lauinger and Ernie Ohlhoff, NRLC director of outreach, unveiled the plaque. NRLC Executive Director David N. O’Steen, Ph.D., expressed gratitude to the Lauinger family for the decades of dedicated devotion to the right to life movement. He highlighted the efficiency of the new building—the third NRLC headquarters in 40 years– and said it will enable more funding for pro-life education, legislation, and political action “which we will need in 2020.”
Father Dennis C. Day, retired NRLC Treasurer, and a parish priest in Sandpoint, Idaho, concluded the dedication with prayers for the work of the staff and the organization, and blessed each room in the building.