Had he lived longer, my Dad would have been 85 years old tomorrow. Happy Birthday, Dad.
He died in 2004.
Before 2004, I couldn’t imagine what it would be like to lose my parents. By December 14, 2005, I’d lost both my Mother and my Father.
Obviously, we all lose our parents, hopefully before they lose their children.
My Dad was very charming; he love to golf with his fellow Government employee retirees – men he had work with for over 35 years. He loved “Jeopardy.” He liked baseball. (My Mom loved baseball.) He liked it when I’d come over on his birthday and carve their pumpkin’s face for Halloween. He like babies, he did not like teenagers. He liked the movies of his generation and he like PBS – Mysteries, “A Fine Romance,” etc. Unfathomably, he liked to watch reruns of the Lawerence Welk show. He had the same job for almost his entire adult life until he retired, a bit early, because President Reagan made it hard for him and his fellows to save the environment. After he retired, he sent money to every environmental group in this country.
I only found that out when he offered me one of 20 calendars he got annually.
He liked to listen to Frank Sinatra sing. He got me interested recordings of old mystery radio shows, he bought me a subscription to Ellery Queen magazine, and he gave me books to read like Woody Allen’s “Without Feathers.”
He called me when there was something on television he thought I’d be interested in. One night he called about 9:45pm to say there was a show about the comedy team of Elaine May and Mike Nichols on PBS. I got to watch the last 15 minutes. He knewed I’d be interested because I had worked for Elaine May when I lived in New York City in 1985. But, I don’t know why he waited until the show was almost over to call me. He was kind of like that.
There’s another side to him to, but I will limit anything I write about him today to the things that make me missed him everyday since he died. I spent the next year almost calling him on the phone when there was something he’d like on television or just to talk about stuff. When I got laid off from my job last January 2009, I wanted to tell him even though I knew his first response would have been “what did you do?” and his second response would be to ask me if I needed any money.
He didn’t believe in God – he took my Mom to church every Sunday, but when I asked him, he said he didn’t believe.
My Mom, my sister, my niece, and I were by his hospital bed as he passed away from us. I said, “Thank you. We’ll be ok. I love you.”
Wish I could talk to him.
Happy Birthday tomorrow, Dad…you are still loved and thought of often.