At his funeral in June 2008, I heard stories from my Dad's friends I hadn't known before then. One of my favorites came from a golfing buddy. When my Dad played he'd always collect stray golf balls from the course. The balls that had been mishit or abandoned. Those that their owners had given up on or thought weren't useful anymore. The friend said that typically when people collected stray balls they'd sell them. This friend saw a big collection Dad had gathered and finally asked him, "Joe, what do you do with all those golf balls? Who do you sell them to?" My Dad's answer surprised him. But it doesn't surprise me. He said, "I gather up a large group and then I head over to Temple College and give them to the golf team to use in practice." No fanfare. No recognition. Just a simple, quiet act of kindness.
I think the golf balls represent his approach with people too. He always made those around him feel important and useful no matter what they brought to the table or had been through. A #friend to all - I hope other than his love of sports I acquired those qualities too.
There’s so much I wish I could tell him and experiences I wish I could have shared with him. I know he’d be with me every step of the way through my ongoing health battle, and I'd get his advice on how to heal a broken heart and hold your head up even when you aren't sure you can.
Most of all I wish I could say thank you for choosing the best woman in the world who you may have called The Colonel but really is more like Super Mom! You were a living example of sacrificial love, and you made the world a better place because you were in it.
You are loved and missed, #Dad! We'll carry you with us always! Until we see you on the 19th hole...🏌🏼❤️