Saturday, June 16, 2012

Father's Day

My father has been dead for nearly two years.  He lead a long and productive life, dying at age 96, just a year short of the 97 years achieved by both of his parents.  Every day when I drive the kids to school, I pass by where he used to live.  The kids and I remember the frequent visits.  They often comment that they want to go back to see him, but I have to remind them that he died.  The finality of death is hard for children with much to look forward to.   It is interesting that they have commented that they feel that he was their "daddy" as well, since he was so close to them.

The photo to the right is a perhaps a graduation picture.   It is certainly from the right era.  Below is a photo taken in the last year of his life.


The kids have often asked about my mother as well, who didn't live to meet them, though many pictures of her hang on the walls of our home.  My daughter feels a bond, saying that she thinks she looks like her, in that both have round faces and dark hair.  In a similar way, I felt a bond to my mother's mother who I never met.  Her younger sister even commented on meeting me how much I reminded her of her sister, even to the point of mannerisms.

But, back to my father.  He was a scientist who was committed to truth.  In his younger years he was quite an outdoorsman, though he would not hunt or fish.  Rather he was an explorer who took only photos.  He walked everywhere, and in the summer encouraged me and my cousins to hike and camp.  He also loved to swim.

The photo to the left is when he was hiking at Ash Cave.  The photo to the below is from a trip my parents took to Cuba before I was born.  I was fortunate to recently find the pictures.
 Later, he caught the travel bug, which he transmitted to me.  In my teens, I was fortunate to accompany my parents on many interesting journeys.  I recall four trips to Europe and one to Japan with my parents while in my teens and twenties.  We often went off the beaten path.  These trips were some of my favorite memories of him.

It is always hard to lose someone we care about.  He is certainly remembered.

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