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Thursday, August 9, 2012

36 years

36 years ago today I was with my friend, KimR.  We were just being happy go lucky 18 year olds.  My dad had been in the hospital for most of the summer but he would get out soon, right?  Wrong.  36 years ago today, my daddy died.  Those next few weeks I remember as a blur.  I remember that two of my friends, KimR and JodyB, drove with us the 3 hours to the graveside.  I remember all the food that people brought.  I remember the disbelief, surely this was a bad dream and I would wake up soon.  I remember when all the family was gone, there was such an intense quite in our house.

My daddy loved me.  I was his only daughter and I was a princess.  I remember one time, he was joking with me about me polishing my toes nails.  I said, "Daddy, I bet I could polish one of your toe nails and you would never even know it."  Famous. Last. Words.  My daddy wore steel toed boots to work and you know it, he dropped something on his foot and yes, he had to go to the emergency room and yes they took off his boot and there was his big toe painted RED!!!  It took a few days before my daddy saw the humor in the situation!!

My daddy could build anything.  I am the proud owner of three pieces of furniture that my daddy built- a table and two bookcases.

My daddy fought in WWII.  He was left for dead in a field.  He woke up to find his dog tags in his mouth- which is what they did for proper identification of the dead.  He recovered in a hospital and memorized all the poems in a poetry book to keep himself sane.  My brother, John, has that very same poetry book and I have a copy.  The book is One Hundred and One Famous Poems.  My daddy fought in the Battle of the Bulge.

My daddy met my mama when she was performing in USO shows at the army base near Anniston, AL.  She was 17 at the time.  He told her he was 19- he was really 22.  She found that out after they were married.  He told her that he knew her father wouldn't let her date an old man of 22!

I miss my daddy.  

Hug your daddy today.  


Allison said...

Beautiful post, Ellen. Amazing story of him memorizing poetry! Thank you for sharing about him.

Bec said...

What a great story! Your daddy sounds like a really special guy.


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