Today is my Father’s birthday. He passed 29 years ago and hard to imagine I have lived more than 1/2 my life with him not here. But my Father does live inside me and although me may not approve of everything I do, many of my traits are a tribute to him
Dad graduated high school at age 16 and graduated college in 4 years with a 5 year degree. He served in WWII and enlisted on December 8, 1941. So while we may be celebrating our Xmas party it will be on the anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor and many of us will be enjoying the company of a young lady into the wee hours on December 8 which is the anniversary of him enlisting. You may want to think about that on that Saturday night that maybe you will enlist the next day to help preserve our democracy. Maybe not, but it could help you enjoy the night thinking about how your life can change overnight.
Dad was a pharmacist and worked long hours. His company knew that when a pharmacist was ill they could call on him to go to another store to work another shift. Although I cannot remember the details he also worked with the State government in Indiana to change some laws involving prescriptions and their abuse.
As a Little League coach he taught me fair play. At 8 years I was not one of the best players and I played the minimum until I approved. Although I wanted to play more I respected that I was not given any favoritism over the others because my Father managed our team. He later became the President of the local Little League and I even remember him talking to a coach of a competing team. The other coach was well respected and an honest volunteer to coach 8-10 year old kids but he let his 7 year old play in an exhibition game. I remember Dad telling him even though it was an exhibition game his boy was taking the opportunity of another boy to participate and that he needed to respect that. Dad did not make noise about it and scream and belittle him and I think the other gentleman gained respect on how he handled it.
I also remember that every time we had a practice or a game I was to call every player on the team to remind them. He never said do not call this boy as he is not good but call every one and report back to me on who you did and did not reach. He was their for the boys. I also remember that my Father smoke cigarettes in 1967 and as soon as he took the coaching job, he quit cold turkey. He said he could not set that bad example to kids that may learn to respect him. That has stuck with me my entire life.
I can tell stories about my Father all day long. He was not perfect but looking around I don’t think there is or was anyone I would trade my Dad for. So Dad, I write this blog in your memory. Whatever shortcomings I may have, I cannot and will not blame you. I just with I could be more like you. If anyone refers to me as a “chip of the old block” I will take that as a compliment. I love you Dad, I hope I have not disappointed you.