Upon hearing that my father had passed away yesterday after a long illness, I realized how unprepared I was for this sad news. I thought I would take it more in stride. I can only hope that he is at peace with my mother and stepmother, each of whom passed away in late 2010. I am hugely grateful for so many wonderful memories of my father.
He was a kind and gentle man with a particular love for animals. His beloved Calvin was a tiny dog. My father was large in body, spirit and mind. Seeing the two together was reason enough for a smile or two. How he cherished his furry friends.
My dad was smart and knew the importance of constant reinvention. He was one of the engineers who helped to build one of the first weather satellites for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration ("NASA"), Nimbus. As federal funding waned, he went on to apply his skills to the design of a machine that would help detect breast cancer. When it was clear that a changing workplace required greater technology savvy, he went back to school to learn Computer Aided Design ("CAD") and Computer Aided Manufacturing ("CAM").
We did not have much money. when I was little but my father made up for it with Sunday drives to nowhere, ending with an ice cream cone or an apple from a local fruit stand. I could keep going for hours. My story book is big. I will never tire of thinking about his strength and valor and a sense of humor that kept things fun.
I learned so much from him. He encouraged me to pick myself up after failure, to work hard, to never give up and to be honorable.
Dad - You will be sorely missed and in our hearts forever. Rest in peace. Thank you for your love and guidance.