As I pause to reflect on Father’s Day this year, I think of many men in my life – my Daddy, My PaPa, my husband, my son and my son-in-law. Especially this year I am reflecting on my Daddy, an awesome man who worked hard, spoiled our mom rotten and loved his family. In honor of him, I am so blessed to reflect back on who he was in our lives.
It seemed the first few years were wrapped in lots of joy. They moved to Michigan where my great grandmother lived. Here is a picture of Dad and his older sister, my Aunt Arlene. Are they not the cutest?
Not too long after these pictures Daddy lost his father on July 4 when Dad was only 7 years old, and being from a family of seven at that time, that was hard on my grandmother who moved from Michigan back to Texas to be close to her brothers and sisters who would help her with all the children while she had to go to work.
I love that cap – wonder if it was from Michigan!
Later Daddy would leave the family to go in the Army. He was always so proud of his service to his country and we were proud to hear him talk about his part in it.
Thanks Dad for marrying Mom and how you loved and doted and cared for her. What an example you set, and oh how I wish you had been blessed with some boys to teach them how to treat a woman. We learned by example to spoil our husbands because you and mom spoiled each other so much!
They married on September 8 and guess who was born exactly 9 months to the day later – ME – born on June 8. It did not give them much time together to know each other, but God always has a plan.
Daddy carried me in his arms. Today I carry him in my heart.
Later came two more girls. Poor Daddy had three daughters but he loved us dearly. I love how Mom took the time to dress us alike, and she always fixed our hair curling it so beautifully. So many beautiful memories from our childhood full of laughter and happiness. Dad and Mom always had easter baskets and bunnies at Christmas and lots of surprises at Christmas like the year all the kids got cabbage patch dolls. Dad always had a poem written for the family. They always made it special and made us and our children feel special. And they called us the Three D’s, Debbie, Delores and Danna. In later years the nurses at the nursing home called us that.
I did not find many pictures of Dad and his siblings but did find one with a couple of his brothers, his mom and two of his sisters. Dad is the good-looking one on the right. My daddy loved his brothers and sisters. I remember the pain of watching him as he lost my Uncle Frankie, his youngest brother on the left to cancer.
And later here he is walking me down the aisle spending thousands of dollars from his savings. It started small, and ended huge. Thank you Daddy for your sacrifices and your love and the fact that I had a proud daddy to walk me down that aisle. Sorry Daddy I know you must have worked hours to pay for it. He didn’t just give us girls birth, he gave us love, he provided us a good life and a good education, and life experiences about love of family and love of God and love of the United States. You Dad were a loving, loyal man.
What a grandpa he was from the moment they were born, he was there – he was there at the hospital waiting and he was home and could not wait for them to come visit. Here he is feeding our son with two of my nieces right there with them. Thank you Dad that you loved us so much teaching future generations about the love of a grandpa, honesty, truth and fun as you took the boys fishing, wrote poetry for all of them and the most meaningful Christmas’ ever.
Daddy loved family. He loved big meals and a big family prayer around the table with our hands joined. He loved teasing the girls and they loved sitting in his lap. He carried that to his nieces and nephews and his great nieces and nephews. Here is Daddy with a great niece Jessica with lots of Christmas gifts. I think this was that talking Mother Goose. Thank you Daddy for caring and loving and holding precious all of your family.
And here with my baby sis, Danna and his niece Kim and it’s Easter.
Daddy and Mom also loved children so much they kept teens (mostly) after the oldest two of us got married. They fostered 24 children in six years. I did not realize there were so many until we found this certificate last year going thru old pictures after we lost Mom. What a tribute to their love for others – offering a bit of love, a bit of hope and a bit of real family. Thank you Daddy for giving of yourself to others. Thank you Sandra Lynn for always staying in touch and visiting Mom and loving her like you did.
Speaking of poems. He always had one written for Christmas and usually Thanksgiving. I grabbed this one today for some reason and took off to the bathroom bawling crocodile tears when I read it. You can see how much he loved his three girls – his 3 D’s.
Daddy loved gardening. He had beautiful flowers and gardens. Here he was on a long trip with Mom getting a few catci to bring back home and plant.
Daddy loved music. He wrote songs in addition to his poetry. He loved playing the harpsichord us girls gave him for Christmas one year. One song he wrote was “Going Home” and we had someone sing it at his funeral.
Daddy always worked hard in construction work, later his own service station with two brothers, his own wrecking yard and eventually he was a manager for the HR2 Company and Hartz Mountain. Thank you Daddy for providing for your family and that Mom was able to be a stay-at-home Mom.
When I posted this picture I smiled. I thought of how Daddy would call us when the storms were going to be really bad with hail, winds and tornadoes. This picture, even though it was at work, reminded me of his love and concern for us even after we married. He seldom called but you knew when he did it was important.
When I think of my Daddy I also pause to think of my Heavenly Father. It is impossible to thank God for all He has given us, and it is impossible to thank our Dads for the sacrifices they made to support us. Thanks Dad for all you gave to our family, but most of all, thank you for your love. Missing you Daddy!