With fathers’ day approaching, I want to acknowledge all those fathers who, like my dad, changed the world around them with their generosity, kindness and gift of love. In memory of dad, I’m reprising a letter I wrote called “Tribute to a Father Truly Hits Home” in response to an article by James Schembari (about his father) that ran in the NYTimes. Originally Published: February 3, 2002 New York Times, I’m sharing it again because special fathers do not have to be public figures.
Re: ”A Death in the Family: In So Many Words, a Wonderful Life (Jan. 6).”
I read this column and took heart. Since my father died I have railed at all the obituaries of ”extraordinary” men who, because of their fame, received large and public tributes.
My dad deserved all this and more. I would say to myself — as consolation — that while my dad was an extraordinary man whose kindness and generosity wove a small but significant web among friends and family, he was not a public man with ”those types of world-changing” accomplishments.
But his being there did change the world and he was so important to his family and friends. We carry his values, sense of humor and dedication with us. We carry his gifts of love and his companionship and friendship.
Thank you for your article about your father. I envy you because (of your job) you were able to tell the world about your dad in a way that I will never be able to.
Even though it’s been years since you left us, you continue to be a profound influence in our lives.