Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day Tribute

This is my father with my son as a baby in his lap. My father got so much joy out of his grandkids. He passed away in 2001 from cancer, and my son is nearly 16-years-old now. My father was a civil engineer who helped design and build many of the freeways in Los Angeles. He worked for CalTrans his entire life, and was always one of the first employees to jump into action coordinating the repairs of freeways after big earthquakes. He was also one of the few to brave his way through the L.A Riots to get to his office to do his job, despite being verbally attacked and nearly physically attacked on the street and having rocks thrown through the windows of his office. He always put others before himself and cared greatly about the community of Los Angeles, even when they didn't know it and treated him poorly.

My father worked very hard for his family and rarely claimed sick days. He was involved with my brother and I in sports and organizations. He remained married to my mother until eternity. What distinguished him from so many people was his integrity. He got my brother and I involved in soap box derby racing, and he frowned upon cheating -- even so much as "bending" the rules. Everything had to be fair and square. He once took responsibility for transporting a friend of mine across country to a race, and my friend spotted a hole in the rules. My friend decided to take advantage of it, and my father stopped him. He talked to him about character and convinced him that the moral choices you make throughout your life are more important than winning.

This is my husband holding our daughter when she was a few days old. She is now 18-years-old. My husband has always been highly involved in our children's lives. The man is a walking encyclopedia and is probably responsible for the majority of our children's education. Our son and daughter do very well in school and life. They make good choices and aren't involved in drugs, alcohol, or any kind of criminal activity. They excel in sports. They care about the feelings of others. So much of their success was directly influenced by their father.

As you can see by the guitar in the background, my husband is a man of many talents. If you give him an instrument, he'll figure out how to play it. He passed his love of making music on to our kids. He was an award-winning writer when I met him. His work with computers now pretty much consumes his life, but he still loves to read. He is always educating himself.

When the kids were babies, he was always the one who got up during the night when they cried since I was such a deep sleeper and needed to be hit over the head with a 2x4 in order to wake up. He'd bring them to me, so they could nurse. Then he'd rock them until they went to sleep. My husband was also a gifted healer when the kids were sick. I am very fortunate to have the men I have had in my life.

Happy Father's Day, Dads! Here's to you.


Leah Fry said...

That's a fine tribute to both the important men in your life. Thanks for sharing.

jane augenstein said...

Great post! Sounds like your dad was a wonderful man and your husband too!
~Jane and Gilly~

Fantastyk Voyager said...

It sounds like you have always been surrounded by fantastic men. Keep the memories of your dad near and cherish your husband.
Happy Father's Day to all the great fathers in the world.

City girl turned Country Girl said...

I like you am celebrating my dad's memory..Very hard to do, but that was a lovely tribute to your dad. He sounds like he was am awesome man!!