It seemed he worked a lot. But there were lots of times he took me to the park. He not only took me to buy ice cream, he would make the heavenly homemade stuff. He took me to see movies, like The Secret of NIMH. He took me to Sesame Street Live. He took me and my brother camping. He taught me to ride a bike. He taught me to shoot a basketball. He taught me to pray.
He's never accumulated great wealth (as our country measures it). He doesn't run in social circles. He's a common man.
He laid carpet. I loved pretending to "kick" in the carpet like him. When assisting him, it was my job to pick up the carpet scraps
and bag them up. He would work long, long days doing hard work. I can still see him dripping with sweat and watching his legs wobble as he trudged on to finish another job "well done." He'd get home late only to sleep a few hours to do it all again the next day. Sometimes seven days a week. My brother and I never went without...anything.
He encouraged my brother, Matt, in his music. Usually they could be found at Burbanks' Real Bar-B-Q on open mic night where my brother would play the blues. He's my brother's biggest fan. Although my hero can't play a lick on a guitar, he can tell you a lot about them.
My hero is my dad. He turns the big 6-0 on May 25th. He is not old...not yet anyway. Just another year closer. He's got two grandsons and one granddaughter on the way, so he's going to be busy.
I love to see my own boys excited to see him. My two year old will get on the phone with my mother and ask, "Whaiw's Wichard (Where's Richard)?" Most of the time, they call him Pappaw. We don't get to see him enough. He's given up the carpet biz to work for a home improvement and construction retail store. It's easier on his back and knees.
Dad taking Jonas around on his new bike.
I remember fishing together on my grandparents' pond. I remember him telling me how much he loved my mom and his boys.
I remember when he was my age. I remember when his beard was dark brown instead of white. I remember when he would read to me. I remember our bedtime prayers. I remember when he would hold me...like he now holds my two boys.
Happy Birthday Dad!