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A Tribute to My Dad

My Dad was an amazing man. In the 1950s, he had 3 small children and a marriage that was headed for divorce. He did something which is common today, but not then. He convinced a judge he could take better care of us than our mother could.

Those early years were not easy, but he had a lot of love and help from his mother and his brothers and sisters. I am lucky to be in the family I am. All of my aunts and uncles have had a small part in raising my 2 brothers and me. One funny thing, that is told about Dad, was when I was little he would try to curl my hair -- remember bobby pins? He would wrap the hair around his finger and when he removed his finger, the hair would come with it. I must have been a lot of trouble then.

When I was 7, we moved to small town in South Dakota. When he saw the little town, he said that if he had the money, he would have turned around and headed back to Missouri. But my Dad was not the type to turn around and quit. Shortly after we arrived, there was a BIG snowstorm and he had 3 small children and no boots or winter clothes. But we stuck it out and had many happy years in that small town.

Even though Dad was our parent, he made our family a unit. He didn't go fishing with his buddies; he took his 3 children fishing. He took his sons hunting when they were old enough. We had many good times in those growing-up years.

Another thing Dad was not afraid to do was talk to us about growing up. One day I asked Dad a "woman question" and he sat with me and answered my questions and explained the facts of life. I've talked to girlfriends who didn't even have that discussion with their mother.

Through the years, Dad had lady friends but he never married them. He explained years later that his women friends would never treat us as well as they treated their own kids, and that was why he would never get married. After we were on our own, he did get married. Dad became a father to her kids and a grandfather to their kids. His wife said with amazement how he talked to her grandkids and helped them through their lives. He was able to give them the advice that helped them during their teenage years.

I also see an extension of Dad through his sons. Both my brothers had children. I see the parent/child relationship between them. It is a good relationship and that was what my Dad was all about.

Dr. Laura. I loved my Dad. This was the eulogy read at his funeral. I was determined not to cry while I was reading this, and I didn't. Doing a eulogy helped me to deal with his death. He died at the age of 74 in March 1975. I hope you will give him this tribute as Father's Day approaches


Tags: Dads, Divorce, Fatherhood, Importance of Fathers, Motherhood-Fatherhood, Parenting, Raising Boys to Men, Read On-Air, Real men
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