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Sunday, June 18, 2017

FATHER'S DAY

It's another year and here we are once again, it is Father's Day, that day when we honor our fathers. Here I am, an old man remembering and missing his old man.

My Dad was a special man, he didn't do anything that shook the world, he just helped make it better, and in doing so, he taught me that helping others was what it is all about.

We did so many things together, working or enjoying sports or just seeing each other. I loved his sense of humor and his reactions to the things I did to tease him, all in love. Many a time I can remember him helping people who had very little, people who were being beaten up by society and the bad luck that sometimes comes with life. I remember one year there was a woman who worked out on the floor at Rollic Inc., where he worked. She was a widow, with a child and she was dirt poor. I recall he and I going to this women's house with paint brushes and paint, and painting her house. Dad bought the paint and rollers along with the brushes and a helper (me) as we repainted the whole place for free. He never took money, he was never in it for the money, only the feeling of doing something good for someone else.

Dad was not a rich man, he couldn't fund my education or buy me a car, he just didn't have it. But with the sense of common decency he funded my heart and soul, teaching me that we do help where we can, and whether people appreciate it or not, it is the act of love that matters most. He didn't go to church because he didn't need to, he was too busy helping others to go himself.

I can honestly say he never hated anyone, was always friendly and giving off the sense that you could be comfortable with him, he held no grudges and when people wronged him, he just moved on. He was good in his heart and soul, and a wonderful example for his grandchildren.

I know I will never be the father or even grandfather he was, he knew what made people happy, because when he entered a room, the atmosphere was suddenly charged with happy people, he loved being a grandpa and bragged about all his grandkids. His family was his whole life, the joy of gatherings and breaking bread, or short visits and trips to ballgames made him happy: the more the merrier.

Dad was a traditionalist, always getting into trouble without trying, it WAS a tradition. Once he went to visit a museum, and on the wall was an oil painting, and with #1 son, he began to give my son an art lesson, touching the surface of the painting, causing the docent to yell at him. "OOOPS!" was his word.

Then there was the time when #1 Son, Dad, and I visited Cooperstown for the Baseball Hall of Fame. We entered a restaurant one night and were told to wait where we were. The waitress was a large blond woman of girth and height with braided hair. She walked away and behind us was half a restaurant that was dark. This got Dad's curiosity and started to roam with me cautioning him about it when suddenly Big Hilda caught him and yelled at him. Once again, "OOOPS!" was his word.

I miss him, every day I think about what he might think of this or that in my life. It is a little darker now, but I know somehow, he knows about all there is that goes on right now. Somehow, he knows.

Happy Father's Day, everyone!

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