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To A Father Who never left us feeling alone or abandoned (even in death), who always kept us warm, fed and loved. Who loved us more than life itself and taught us how to love. Who taught us how to share, instilled values in us and taught us to believe in God.......... and made darn sure we obeyed everyone of the commandments while growing up so we would keep them as we grew older. Who showed us how to respect others, love others, and that most times happiness comes with a song. Who taught us respect for others, ourselves and the flag. Who taught us the consequences of what "pull my finger means" just to see us run and kept that trick until the granchildren were old enough to reach his hand.
A Father Who's true laugh would could be heard for blocks and had enough love and laughter for everyone that passed his way........he knew no stanger and was no stranger. Who taught all of us the love for music and was never downhearted when his children didn't learn to play anything musical except the radio but grew excited when his grandchildren picked up instruments. (Well, Dad, we have two that just seem to keep on going with music! And both play guitar).
A Father Who made my sister, brother and me realise as very young children that "meals ready to eat" really can be pulled from the garden or picked from the tree and eaten because spit really does wash them. Who always said that common sense was as important as book sense and maybe even better in order to get through life properly.
A Father Who gave of himself totally and completely even when his energies were fading. Who loved his grandchildren each the same as he did his many friends and all of his family. Who had a love for the soil and the growth it would bring from planting a simple seed.
Our Father died shortly after this photo was taken. We all knew on that day he wasn't feeling well but because everything his children/grandchildren/friends did was important to him he made darn sure he didn't miss it and for the last time was surrounded by nieces and nephews and friends that loved him.
What so many people don't know is that my father died one of the richest men in the world and left all that knew and loved him tons of wealth. He had no money in his pockets to speak of, no acres of land or a mansion for us to fight over. Instead he left us all rich from the kindness and goodness in his heart and the warm memories that will never be for sale.