Saturday, June 19, 2010

A Letter To My Dad On Father’s Day

Hey, Dad!

I know you’ve been watching, but just in case you’ve been busy up there, I thought I’d update you on the goings on down here.

The kids are all teenagers now! All three will be in high school this Fall. They are all healthy and doing great.

Lynda and I have tried to raise them right, and I think we’ve done a pretty good job of it so far.

I imagine you would be proud of them and how we’ve raised them.

I’ve used many of your tactics…changed some, reduced others, added my own twists.

I guess that’s the way it goes.

Rick effortlessly glides through school, gets excellent grades, and is a multiple Varsity letter winner on the swim team. He makes it look easy. He is 6 feet tall, and a good-looking kid. He’s like a bigger, smarter, more athletic, and more attractive version of me. His passion is computers and related things, but I suspect he will be highly successful in whatever he decides to do with his life.

Recie makes school look easy too. Good grades, popular, free-spirited, and multi-talented. Music and competitive swimming are her passions, and she has done both expertly with many awards. She is like her mother…tall, pretty, and lady-like. She is a treasure.

Willie is smart as a tack, built like a brick shit house, and is most like me mentally and emotionally when I was his age. He is a very active young man. Handsome, strong, and always on the go. He enjoys music, swimming, and bike riding. Strenuous physical activity is his passion, but he is far from being a dummy. He has excellent powers of deduction and reasoning, and can read people and situations unlike most kids his age. He is capable of getting good grades and has done so, but he must actually apply himself and work at it. It doesn’t come easy for him.

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it, Dad?

Lynda has been extremely helpful in keeping Willie focused on schoolwork.

Lynda is healthy and busy as ever. I couldn’t have chosen a better wife. She is the biggest reason the kids are doing so well. I tagged along for the ride and contributed an important fatherly influence.

The value of an intact family, with a mother and father, cannot be overestimated.

You and Mom set a fine example for me.

Speaking of Mom…she is healthy, and is keeping busy helping with grandkids and great grand kids.

She still misses you terribly, and she speaks of you often.

Hell…we all do.

Mom has moved on with her life. She seems happy, and enjoys the company of her family surrounding her.

All of your children are healthy and doing great also. They are free-minded and contributing members of society. You raised us right.

I have kept your memory alive by contributing many of your racing photos to various projects. Your work has been published in calendars, magazine articles, promotional advertising, and many internet sources.

You might be angry that I haven’t been paid for allowing your photos to be used, but I didn’t feel right about profiting from your work.

I am happy that your skills are so well appreciated and acknowledged now…something that didn’t happen often enough while you were with us.

I also published all of your Vietnam articles on the internet. They are highly acclaimed and well received also.

I have had many Vietnam veterans and their families contact me to tell me how much they appreciate your work.

It has been emotionally rewarding and personally satisfying that you are finally getting the recognition you deserve.

I never knew much about your professional life and attitude, but I have a sneaking suspicion you were never a braggart or a show-boater. I think you didn’t crave attention and accolades. You wanted to be respected as a professional in your field.

I know you are up there with your mom and dad and Uncle David. I can just imagine the shenanigans you four are up to!

Even though he is advancing in years, Uncle Tom is as healthy and robust as ever. Must be that clean living, and that wonderful wife he has! She is an angel.

I have come to really enjoy Tom’s company. He is always coming up with another humdinger of a story about you that I’ve never heard before.

You know that I always loved you and respected you. I appreciate your guidance, and I am thankful you were my dad.

I know now it wasn’t easy.

I still miss you and think of you often.

To this day, you still help guide me through this life.

A son could ask for nothing more.

Happy Father’s Day, Dad.

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