Sunday, June 21, 2015
This afternoon I came home from church with a million thoughts about my dad. I pulled out my photo albums and enjoyed reminiscing about his life.
Dad played basketball and football, ran on the track team and even did cheerleading when he was at the Iowa School for the Deaf. He performed on the stages of more Deaf Clubs than I can count and was the president of numerous clubs and groups. He was a member of many competition bowling teams. He went on a tour back east when he was a young adult and has an amazing postcard collection from his trip. He lived in Australia for a year and then moved back to the states and built himself a house. He helped lead a strike when things were unfair at work. He swam across the Mississippi River when I was young as we, his family, watched from a nearby lighthouse. I remember my mom being scared that he might now make it but my own thoughts were more along the lines of, "Of course he'll make it! My dad can do ANYthing!" Despite his deafness, he supported and encouraged the love of music and singing that my little brother Chip and I were born with, often blaring the radio or MTV and dancing around the living room with us. When Dad would come visit his grandchildren he always had a treasure in his pocket for them, whether it was a quarter or a piece of candy or some little trinket he'd picked up somewhere, he was always the bearer of gifts for the kids. He worked hard his entire life to make sure that our family was well cared for and loved.
Seven of my ten kids don't remember him at all, and that is hard. But I like to think that he hand-picked the six who were born after he died, that he made sure we were sent the best of the best.
Man, do I love and miss my Pop.