In Memory of My Hero
2010 brought with it many joyous and happy times, but it also brought a time of deep sorrow and loss. My Dad passed away on October 17, 2010. He was truly my hero, my support, my cheerleader. One of the greatest qualities he had was his ability to see the good in people; especially his family. None of us are perfect, but rather than dwell on our inperfections, he chose to dwell on what we did well. He was a joy to be around. Though he was 93 years old; almost 94, he was sharp as a tack right up to the day before he passed.
My Dad was a tool and die maker by trade. He loved to work with his hands. He was methodical in everything he did, from making a part to fix the car, to making cream of wheat cereal for breakfast. That’s just the way his mind worked. Every thing he made was made to perfection. He believed strongly in quality and excellence. He had strong “meaty” hands and as he grew older and used them less, they were so very soft to hold. I always loved his hands. Well, maybe not always, as they were used to provide always well-deserved discipline to my backside!
Dad was a thinker. He would ponder and think about things; his mind was always active. As he grew older, he became very interested and concerned about the political flavor of this country. It was his favorite topic of conversation and would interject his ideas to anyone that he was talking to.
Dad loved to eat. His favorite foods were chocolate (of course!), cheese, spaghetti, scrambled eggs with ham and cheese, and seafood. Last Christmas as I was preparing a dish, he was sitting in the kitchen watching me. He said he loved to watch me cook, because I did things in a very orderly and organized way (methodical? lol). I was spreading the bread crumbs gently over the top of the dish I was making and he made the comment, “you have such a gentle touch, Nancy”. He continued to marvel at my “gentle touch” and then he said, ” yup, you get that from me”. Everyone in the kitchen at the time roared with laughter. Dad had an incredible sense of humor.
He loved the home I bought; he thought it was a treasure with all the history, the architectural elements and the beautiful flowers and trees in the yard. He had a mobility chair that he would ride around the yard. He kept a sturdy cable “hook” on his chair, and would find fire ant hills and poke at them as he passed by them. It fascinated him to see the ants come pouring out to defend their hill.
He helped me a great deal in putting up the shelves in the pantry. I used his drill to make the holes for the screws, and to screw those screws into the wall. We lost several drill bits in that process! He was genuinely amazed at all the work I was able to do on the house, and would comment, “Nancy can do anything she sets her hands to”. I think a lot of my abilities came from him. We were indeed a kindred spirit, and I was most definitely a Daddy’s girl.
It saddens me that he won’t be here to see the completed renovation, as much of what I wanted to do would have pleased and benefited him. I still want to discuss things with him. We spent hours on the front porch talking about what I wanted to do next with the house, and I enjoyed getting his input. Somehow, without missing a beat, those conversations were interjected with politics. 🙂 Daddy loved his family; he was proud of every one of us. He was my hero, and I’d like to think he is still watching over me, cheering me on from Heaven.