The Dalai Lama Lands in Oxford En Route to Danbury

Town officials met with the Tibetan leader Thursday at Waterbury-Oxford Airport. They describe the emotional experience.


Town officials greeted Tenzin Gyataso, the 14th Dalai Lama and spiritual leader of Tibet, Thursday morning when he flew into the Waterbury-Oxford Airport before heading to Western Connecticut State University in Danbury for a two-day visit.

State police from the Oxford Resident Trooper's Office and First Selectman George Temple greeted The Dalai Lama as he got off a private jet about 9:30 a.m.

“I told him that on behalf of the people of Oxford, we were honored to have him in our town," Temple stated in a news release sent out Friday. "He thanked me and told me how beautiful our town was from the air.’’

The Dalai Lama was then greeted by state troopers who were present, including Lt. Michael Hofbauer, Oxford Resident Trooper Sgt. Dan Semosky and Oxford Resident Trooper Josef D’Uva. The Dalai Lama was then "whisked away" by State Department employees for his motorcade to Danbury.

“Everyone who was there for that brief moment in time knew that we were in the presence of greatness," Temple said. "It was a wonderful experience to see such a humble man who has enriched so many lives."

Temple said he knew that The Dalai Lama was "a man of peace" who was forced to leave Tibet when his country was occupied by the communist Chinese. Temple also said that since his exile, The Dalai Lama has advocated for Democratic reforms in Tibet.

Temple said that although the Dalai Lama has received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 and has been the recipient of 84 other awards including honorary doctorates, he describes himself as a simple Buddhist monk.

Temple said that when he came down the steps of his plane, he bowed toward him, and Temple bowed back. 

Semosky said it was an experience he will never forget. 

"He is just a wonderful, peaceful man," he said. "When you see him on TV, you see that bright smile. That really comes through so well when you meet him in person."

Mary Beth Nelsen October 19, 2012 at 07:10 PM
I am SO jealous! Which isn't very Buddhist of me. What a good man.
Art Venable October 19, 2012 at 07:58 PM
Looks like Big Dan is asking for some form of ID in photo #4...
xxxoxox October 19, 2012 at 08:11 PM
Quite a day for Oxford. Greeting international dignitaries. What's next.
carl bassett October 20, 2012 at 01:00 PM
Quite a day for Oxford? Mr. Brown, I voted for you and your constituents on the board of education. i was at the football game last saturday with my son. i am embarrassed and ashamed to say i live in oxford right now. the dali lama has nothing to do with the inappropriate behavior oxford has supported for so long. maybe the dali should be first selectman in oxford!
Bonnie October 20, 2012 at 01:03 PM
"Uncle" Dan always stands the same way!! Big, tall and his hands on his hips! He's an awesome guy! One question tho'... Why did they land in Oxford and not in Danbury? I'm thinking something with the runway but I'd think they would've flown him in a smaller plane from here to Danbury. But all in all I guess it's nice that he got to see our great town!
xxxoxox October 20, 2012 at 05:36 PM
Hi Carl, I was a little confused by your comment. I usually am not available to attend football games due to my schedule so I don't know what happened to cause you to be embarrassed. I'm not sure what this article has to do with the Board but these are my personal sentiments. I appreciate your past support and I hope that what has been done in the last year has been of benefit to Oxford. If you have any issues with my performance or conduct, please feel free to contact me. My telephone number should be listed but you can always leave me a message at the BOE office and I'm sure they will get that to me.
B Miller October 21, 2012 at 11:05 PM
Big hitter the Lama!
Craig Zac October 22, 2012 at 11:34 AM
Wish we could have known about this... My wife and I would have loved to have seen him. Even from a distance. What a great man!
Jennifer October 22, 2012 at 01:28 PM
The flowing robes, the grace, bald... striking.


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