My dad died 13 years ago today, not quite three years after my mom. I can honestly say that not a day goes by that I don’t think about both of them.
My dad was a cool guy, very straight-forward, no BS or game-playing with him. He didn’t graduate from high school; instead he went to trade school and for a short period of time had a radio and television repair shop. He was also into photography and did weddings, first communions, etc. Around the time he met my mom he got a job with the phone company as a janitor, worked his way up into installation and repairs, and eventually retired from the same company many years later.
He had his first round of cancer in the early 90s. Late in 1997 he started not feeling well, a mass was found in his abdomen, and surgery was scheduled for the following January. While in recovery we were told that the cancer had spread throughout his entire body with treatment not an option. Not long after he entered a hospice and died a few months later.
My life has changed so much since he died, I often wonder if he’d be proud of me, happy with the decisions I made. Missing him isn’t purely selfish though..he never met N, the other kids don’t remember him. I wish they could’ve have had him in their lives.
I’m realistic and know he wasn’t perfect but I couldn’t have hoped for a better father. 13 years later and it still feels like yesterday.
Army dad, maybe 1950:
Crossing the Rainbow Bridge in Niagara Falls with my dad, probably early 1970s:
My mom passed away 2.5 weeks after C was born, so she meant a lot to my dad:
The first shot is my dad and I, the second is my dad with T 30 years later. Same house, same room:
My dad’s wedding band, which I still have: