My father...

November 11, 2009

I haven't talked about my father too often.  In fact I think I've only written about him here about how he wrote Ryan's eulogy and a few other times.

02-13-2007-22-37-25-993 02-03-2007-23-00-43-777

I think of him often and hate that my kids will never know the man I knew as my father. Chelsea was 8 and Zach 4 when we lost him.  He was only 53...

As a kid I found my fair share of trouble.  Probably between all the kids my brother Joe and I were the most rebellious.  I was always missing my curfew, changing the time on my watch, as if it fooled him, and cutting class.  He even caught me smoking!

My friends all called him strict and he was the dad that boys feared having to meet. And if we were going out on a date, he had to meet you!  He showed up at skating rinks to pick me up when I was out to late or arrived in a friends driveway when I was grounded and supposed to be home.  He even climbed on my school bus when I couldn't find my bus pass (yes we needed a pass to ride our school bus) and assured the bus driver that I would have that pass tomorrow, but today I am riding the bus.  You can say I kept him on his toes in my teen years and he was sure to embarrass me all that he could!

And so I think in part that made me tougher on my own kids...

Dad and Gordon 94

But today thinking of my dad, I know the family problems that we share with my sibling would be non existent, he would not let him get away with his behavior and looking back that was probably the one thing that kept my brother in check all the years previous.

He was reserved and extremely knowledgeable, modest with a dry sense of humor.  If he joked with you, that meant he liked you!  He didn't boast of his successes in life, they reflected in his family, not him. 

Grandpa and RyanGramp gram and great gram 92

He was 18 when my sister was born, joined the service and by the age of 25 had 5 children.  (Dean they lost as a baby)

My mother was always home with us kids and my dad working, sometimes several jobs to make ends meet.  They were stationed in Germany for a while, Georgia (where I was born) and then moved back to Ohio.

When I was in 10th grade he would go to the library with me to get books on business and it was soon after that he started his own business, which still exists today.

In my life I only saw him cry twice... once was at the hospital with Ryan and one was months later when I talked with him about Ryan.  I never realized the toll it took on my parents when we lost Ryan.  Not only did they lose their grandchild, but they lost me for a long time and had to watch Joel and I suffer.

He was bare bones....what you see is what you get

I could talk on an on about him, and I probably continue when I can, so someday my kids can look back and get another glimpse of who he was. 

In the degree that we remember and retell our stories and create new ones we become the authors, the authorities, of our own lives - Sam Keen


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