Tuesday, February 28, 2017


I've written of this event before, I shall write of it again. On this date, seven years ago, my Dad died. I was going to use a euphemism for "died" then asked myself, why? Why should I use a euphemism for the simple fact that death came for my father on a cold, moonlit night in February? It comes for us all at some point in our lives. Some folks are ready for it, perhaps even welcome it. But the one surety in this life is death. (Taxes are not a certainty. Not everyone pays taxes, but everyone dies.)

There was a lot going on at the beginning of the year 2010. I was beginning my exile in Andover. My youngest child discovered she was pregnant. My Dad was suffering some pretty severe health problems. As all things do, these things passed. I eventually returned from Andover. My daughter had a beautiful baby girl (followed some years later by a second). My Dad didn't recover from his health problems.

They killed him.

I hope you don't think I'm being overly morbid about all this. But sometimes, in the quiet of the night, I still weep over the loss of my Dad. I don't mean a broken, sobbing, hysterical weeping, usually it's just a catch of the breath, a single tear, perhaps a long silence which is no doubt accompanied by me staring into the infinite distance, completely unfocused and somehow not really there.

There are days when it feels like Dad's death was a long, long time ago. On other days, especially at this time of year, it feels like yesterday. The hurt fades, it doesn't go away. It doesn't ever go away.

Of course I remember the good times we had. But the void, the silence that is left behind is sometimes overwhelming. Perhaps not everyone feels that way, perhaps they hide it well, or perhaps they never really cared. I only know how I feel.

I miss you Dad.

A lot.


  1. What a beautiful tribute, to your Dad, to life, to you. This is exactly how I have felt, although I still have both my parents and both are fairly vigorous, I miss my father-in-law (1996), and 4 beloved grandparents I was very close to, in the past dozen years. That catch--when I see something Grandma made, or stand on the bank of a lake and a fish jumps (Grandpa) and all those things. Sometimes, tears. Sometimes, just hard to swallow. Always alloyed with joy that I had them. It wouldn't be so hard if they had not been so wonderful.

  2. Yesterday on FB one of my old friends posted lots of photos from the 70's of us kids being young and stupid, but having a great time. There in the midst of the pics was a photo of my dad - arm in arm with the young revelers. It made me catch my breath and tear up. One of the comments just said, "Otto" as if that was all that needed to be said. Reverence. I'll post the pic on my blog.

  3. I am sending you a verbal hug. Not that it will do much for you, other than to let you know that I care.

    Paul L. Quandt

  4. My FIL passed in January, 2010, and my dad in May, 2011. You never get "used" to it; you merely learn how to go on despite the hole their passing created. And I still think of things I'd like to ask Dad, all the time.

  5. Happens to me too, Sarge...in fact it just did thanks to your post.

  6. The BadgerDad died in 1996, and I still miss him every day, just I do the BadgerMom. It is natural, and we will be together forever eventually, as will you and your Dad.

  7. It's not morbid, just simple reflection about one of the greatest and most influential people in your life.
    I personally think its good for the soul even though it brings on a little sadness.

    I lost two Dad's. My biological Dad, Ralph Kinion, caught Leukemia from shrapnel wounds in the
    Battle of the Bulge, died in 1953 when I was two. My Step-Dad, Walt Willis who raised me, died in 1996.
    Great memories and sad ones but I'm glad I have them.

  8. Far too many enter the clearing before us.
    Then every year they pass in review as we honor their memories.
    Often we have to clear a little dust from our eyes.

  9. This post is spot on, my dad died this past October and the hurt does fade....slowly. He lived with me after his stroke in 09 and I miss him. Prayers for you.

  10. It has been thirty five years or so since my father died, and I was lucky to have grown past my idiot teen years so that we could have a relationship as men. Just not enough time. I would have said that by now the memories are all good, but as I am typing this I can feel the emotions welling up. NFO is right, it never goes totally away.

    1. I did get to spend some quality time with my Dad after I retired from the Air Force. Ten years, seems long, wasn't long enough.

  11. I know the feeling, Sarge. Cancer took my Dad in July of '13. We knew it was coming, but that didn't make it easier. I miss him, but he had a good life, lived well. Although he's gone, I'm proud to call myself his son. I'm certain you know how that is.
    --Tennessee Budd

  12. My Dad dropped dead one day. Massive death shot to heart and liver. A quick passing. And I miss him every day. Hanging out here with all y'all has helped me with dealing with his death. I thank you all very much for that.

    But, my mother-in-law, though not my favorite person in the world was still someone I was beginning to accept as a decent person, was murdered by one of those 'rehabilitation' hospitals three years ago. That trauma I think is going to be a long-time to heal, if ever. My wife from losing her mother in such a foul way and me from dealing with my wife's trauma. So, I know how you feel about what I expect your father went through from the way you phrased your post.

  13. It's nice that you have a wonderful man to remember, and lots of good memories.


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