Our Echo
Title, story type, location, year, person or writer
 
Add a Post
View Posts
Popular Posts
Hall of Fame
Projects
Visitors
Contests
Search

Things you might not know about my dad

Story ID:7851
Written by:Diana Coster (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:In Memory
Location:Midwest USA
Year:2009
Person:Fred
View Comments (4)   |   Add a Comment Add a Comment   |   Print Print   |     |   Visitors
Things you might not know about my dad

Things you might not know about my dad

Things you might not know about my dad

Things you might not know about my dad

Things you might not know about my dad

Things you might not know about my dad
(my eulogy for my dad, Fred, 1928-2009)

He was tough.
He was born after doctors told his mom she had lost the baby. As a small child he survived an accidental axe blow to the head from his younger sister and a bout with rheumatic fever that left him so weak he was taken to school in a wagon for several months.
He endured pain and disability from severe arthritis starting at the age of 17 and continuing throughout his entire life. Despite this he never complained. When I asked him about this once he replied “I didn’t want to burden others with it.” Self-centeredness simply wasn’t an option.
He never felt sorry for himself. Only once in his life did I hear him admit that he occasionally wondered what he might have looked like if his back had not gotten so curved. As soon as he said it he looked embarrassed. Vanity was not an option either.

He had a wonderful sense of humor.
At the age of 3 he attended a Shirley Temple movie with his older sister where his infectious giggle soon had everyone in the theater laughing with him.
Some will remember his orneriness, like the time he put his pet squirrel down the back of his sister’s shirt, or dropped a tiny hand-folded paper boat into his neighbor’s tea at a teachers’ meeting, or left a rubber snake in a desk drawer to be found by a snake-fearing co-worker, or the cash gifts he would give his adult children at Christmas in difficult to open puzzle boxes. Always with a feigned innocence that coming from someone so earnest was quite convincing, all the while chuckling internally, really rather pleased with himself.

He understood people.
He saw to the core of people, through their insecurities to their motivation, understood their vulnerabilities and treated each individual with the kindness and respect due to each and every child of God. He saw the best in you and brought out the best in you.

He loved people.
He withered in isolation in the hospital and came back to life when well enough to resume his volunteer activities. Only his last year when he was too ill to leave the house did his volunteer work stop. Without a sign that he ever felt sorry for himself, he never stopped giving of himself.

Each day he was here he made the world a better place.
He spread his light with each life that he touched as a teacher, through his church, through his volunteer work, through a life lived as a shining example of how to walk in Christ’s footsteps, how to “act justly, love mercy and walk humbly” with God.

He was my hero.
The standard I strive for with little hope of achieving.


Perhaps he touched your life.
Through friendship, through kindness, through the inspiration of a life well lived. How far that light must have spread in 80 years. How much further it can spread as we go out and touch other lives in a similar way.
He would never take credit for the light. He was just living life the way you were supposed to, the way he had been taught. While he preached a few sermons over the years, his life was his witness. His eyes saw with God’s mercy, his actions spoke God’s love.
Let us thank God for the gift of Fred, a “good and faithful servant”.

Well done Dad.
You taught us well. You deserve your peace. We will miss you.