Best wishes to all dads on their special day. Below is a picture of my dad taken in 1917 when he was in the fourth grade. He grew up to be a lot happier than he appears here - maybe it was the Great War or just a bad day.
|Dad in fourth grade, 1917-18|
His mom and dad were the son and daughter of first generation immigrants from Germany and Wales. He was afflicted with polio in his early years, but that didn't stop him. He graduated from high school in the midst of the Roaring Twenties, went to work to support his aging parents and married the love of his life in the midst of the Great Depression in 1933.
|Graduation, Class of 1925|
He was an entrepreneur at heart who was self-employed in the insurance and utilities industries and owned his own business by the early '50's. He left the Rust Belt in 1956 for even better careers in hospitality management, a field he loved dearly because of his commitment to quality service and customer satisfaction. He was "old school:" through and through and never met a stranger.
|At home in 1928|
Nancy and I have raised three fine children to successful adulthood. Though neither of our dads was present during virtually all of our children's "shaping" we know that their values played a major role in teaching our kids to be responsible, caring, and loving individuals. Such continuity is essential if we are to have community and commonwealth in these and future times.
|Dressed for community theater in 1928|
Not a day passes without a wish to have our dads and their guidance with us once more. How fortunate we were to have such beacons in our lives. And how wonderful it would be to see the reverence and respect for fatherhood restored in our nation today.
Having expressed that wish for the future, we are left with this wish for today: Happy Father's Day and a big "Thank You" to our dads, Bill and Vergil, and to fathers everywhere.
|Dad and Mom at her family's farm in 1936|