Who's your daddy?

A thread for some positive words, history, lessons learned, quotes and such having to do with our Dads.

My pop is an engineer on the railroad in Kentucky. He drives coal trains (miles long) across the state. He is a redneck, no doubt - but he is also one hell of an intelligent man. He is a damn good chess player - we have had some great battles. He has a small arsenal of weapons which made growing up fun: Guns, Knives, Bows, Cross-Bows, BB-guns. We were always taught strict rules of safety, and the guns were needed to kill snakes and such. They are also very cool. :cool:

He left home at the age of 12, preferring to work for himself instead of go to school. He traveled up and down the East coast, convincing people he was older than he was. He worked many jobs and he worked them hard. He is a very strong and tough man and he always was able to take care of himself. He convinced the army he was old enough to join, and did a few years in the army starting when he was 16. When he got out he met my mother in a diner in Florida. She was a waiter at the local IHOP, and asked if he needed anything else. He replied “How about a place to live?”. Well it just so happened the house right next to my mothers was for rent. He moved into that house the next day and the rest is history.

He was a gambler and a great pool player, but gave up that lifestyle when I was born. He taught me well though, and I am dangerous in a poker game and aint to shabby on the pool table either.

His advice to me has been to get a job where you use your mind and not your might. Get a job where you come home with clean clothes. I wanted to work at a fast-food restauraunt, and he wouldn’t let me. He thought I could do better. One summer he did have me work for my grandfathers blacktop laying company to show me just how hard physical labor was (although it paid pretty well for a 14 year old kid!).

He ended up tricking me into learning about computers. Initially resistant, once I found out you could download free games off of “bulletin board” systems, I was hooked. I ended up learning quite a bit from him about computers inside and out. He taught himself and gave me skills that pay my rent.

He loves to fish and he has a house boat. We spent many a night on the lake and we always bet a dollar on who catches the next fish. He has always bailed me out when I get into trouble, and he has been a very supportive and loving Dad. I consider myself lucky.

DaLovin’ Dj

My father is nothing but ground-up, alcholic ass served on a pretty platter. The best thing I can say about him is that I learned what I don’t want in a partner, or in myself.

My maternal grandfather, however…

Left high school to join the Navy and marry my grandmother.

Fought in the war, came home to a job with Ford.

Never got anything from his parents, who could have helped, had he asked.

Worked that job until retirement (early). Raised three children and made sure they had everything they needed, including college educations for the two that wanted them. Despite that, was so investment wise and frugal he bought enough property they almost renamed the town after him.

Got his GED the same year my mother (the eldest) got her diploma.

Quit smoking when I was born.

Was the person that immediately invited my boyfriend-(who is black)-at-the-time into our family reunion and made him comfortable when everyone else was openly pointing, staring and talking about him. Fuggin’ rednecks.

Is the only one in my family who supports my acting career.

Is the only one in my family who supported my divorce.

Can STILL beat both me and my stepfather at pool. Un-freakin’-heard-of.

In his 70’s, still golfs every day. Beats both of us at that, too.

When he goes out with my stepfather, is often mistaken as the younger of the two.

Still has a head of Irish black hair. No grey. C’mon, how cool is that?

Has always “allowed” my grandmother to do exactly what she wanted to do. At a time most married women did not have jobs, she was a teacher. When she retired from that, became a pianist/organist for several organizations. In an age where most women were expected to be only wives and mothers, he understood that she was a full person in her own right and always treated her as such.

Can be a mean son-of-a-bitch when he needs to be, but has never been so BEFORE that point.

And, maybe my favourite of all, at my grandparents 50th wedding anniversary a few years ago, they ran around the entire time holding hands and smooching.

I love them both and respect the hell out of them. My grandfather IS the man I think of as my father, though. He always has an open ear, always waits until I ask for advice to give it, and loves me no matter what.

I think I’ll go call him now.

My dad is a journalist for CBC Radio News, the national reporter for Montreal. He’s worked for the Mother Corp as long as I’ve been around. He’s won human rights awards for his work on First Nations issues, and he’s travelled around the world, most recently to Pakistan and Afghanistan, for his stories.

I’ve had unpleasant things to say about him in the past, and the two of us really don’t get along that well, but I do respect him for his work.

My father is 87.
He used to be an alcoholic, which made my childhood not happy.
However, he gave up drinking about 5 years ago as he has been taking care of my mother who had a stroke 7 years ago.
She is in a wheelchair and has dementia, so his poatience is strained much of the time.
He used to work as a truck loader and unloader, transferring tons of office equipment every day.
In 1976 he got throat cancer and had a laryngectomy.
He is fine today, though a bit deaf.
He is nice enough to let me and my son (his only chidl and grandchild) live with him, as we’d be in a homeless shelter if not.

My dad was great, but I didn’t really appreciate him for what he was until my very late teens or early 20s. He suffered from the problem of repressing his emotions often; it was how he was raised and he tried to get past it in his life but didn’t always succeed. Mom and my sister and I would giggle when he’d try to stifle laughter at some funny TV show or something. But we knew he loved us, at least, even though he was a quiet man. And he liked the boyfriend that I eventually made my husband; I’m glad they got to meet at least.

He was smart, he liked humor writers, political commentary, and music. He played trombone in the city’s “pops” band. He also worked away in a factory to support us, and for quite some time he would bicycle miles each way to and from work, even though his job was strenuous. Before he met my mom, he was in the Army, stationed in Germany for a while. He said right before his discharge they were making them sit around in swamps and such. Not too long after that, we started sending troops to Vietnam - he was fortunate.

His brother told me that dad liked to draw airplanes when he was a kid. I remember helping him build model airplanes, though I bet I was more of a hinderance than help at that age. He didn’t complain though.

He taught me to throw a baseball, and ride a bike, and bought my sister and I a Daisy air rifle even though we might ‘shoot an eye out’. :wink: He helped me launch model rockets in the backyard, and let me read his National Geographic magazines. And when people asked him if he was disappointed that he didn’t have sons, he’d say absolutely not - he valued us for who we were and didn’t push us into doing anything.

I realized only later that one reason my mom liked the James Bond films with Sean Connery in them was that my dad looked a lot like a young Sean Connery, even when he was 50 (barring the natural wrinkles with aging). :smiley:

Dad died unexpectedly on the very night before he and my mom were supposed to come visit my sister and I; we were both off at college for summer sessions and hadn’t seen them in about 3 months. He died quietly in his sleep so that wasn’t bad at least. He was in his early 50s, and an unexpected heart arrhythmia apparently got him - he’d lived all his life not knowing that he had damage to his heart from rheumatic fever as a kid, which was only diagnosed a few years previously. He was on meds but it looked like his heart just wasn’t able to cope with it.

Don’t take people you love for granted, even a little bit. You never know what will happen.

Hee hee. I thought this was going to be some sarcastic post, and I was all ready to come in here and say:

My dad is the best. He’s going to be 65 in July. When he was young, he dropped out of high school and joined the Navy. He was married to a woman who abandoned him when he went to Korea. She took my sister with her. My father ended up going to Viet Nam. He then came back to Charleston, lived with my uncle Charlie, and was his best man when he married my mother’s cousin. My mother was a bridesmaid. They got stuck taking the ‘decorated’ car home, and it became their first date. They got married 6 weeks later. He adopted my two older sisters from my mother’s first marriage. I came along 10 years after my parents got married, and my sister 3 years later. He and my mother tried to adopt my brother after he was placed with us as a foster child, but my brother’s mother wouldn’t sign the adoption papers. So my parents kept him and a couple of his sisters until they were old enough to go out on their own.

My father has worked various jobs, but he’s not the kind of guy to take a job lightly. He ran a dairy farm, he was an exterminator, and he’s been a heating and air-conditioning repair man for 30 years now. He works very hard to provide for our family. He is extremely smart, and he too can whup my butt at chess. He is the one who taught me how to play chess and cribbage.

My dad was never a very talkative person. He worked hard, and was one of those dads that came home, ate dinner, watched tv, and went to bed. But everything changed when my oldest sister (his first daughter) called him one day. It was as if his life was finally complete. Of course, it took her nearly 30 years to find him, but it was well worth the wait. He got really involved in our lives, and now he knows just as much about me as the rest of my family. He has weathered through all of my sisters having kids at young ages (all unmarried, also) and become the stereotypical ‘grandpa’. He goes to church every Sunday that he can get the rest of the family to go, and he is on the church council. He worked with the Boy Scouts for 30 years, which is how my brother came into my life. He genuinely loves kids, and has helped a lot of kids to realize they are better than they think they are. He even used to come on my Girl Scout camping trips and teach us things about the woods and nature and tying knots. (Always important!) I still bump into guys on the street that were in my dad’s scout troop 15 and 20 years ago, and the first thing they say is, “how’s your dad doing? He was the coolest.”

My dad is a big ol’ burly redneck, but recently the “I can do anything!” mantra is getting hard for him. About 5 years ago, he apparently had a heart attack and didn’t even know it. And one day while driving home from Myrtle Beach, he had a stroke, so he just pulled over and got his partner to drive the rest of the way. As if it wasn’t a big deal, just a minor setback. I remember a couple of years ago, he was carrying a half-ton air conditioning unit from the top of one building to the top of another, and he fell between the gaps of the rooftops. Not to mention the time that he almost died of heatstroke on top of a school building because some moron locked the roof access door. He continuously busts his butt to work a crap job because he knows he’ll be able to take care of all of us.

I think I’ll have to print this out now, just so he can read it and know how much I love and appreciate him.

Eew. Just so that doesn’t sound too weird, my uncle Charlie was not really my uncle. So, no, my parents weren’t into that whole marrying-into-your-own-family thing, even if it was just relation by marriage.

Good gravy!

My father is everything to me.

I’ve always been “Daddy’s Girl”. Most of what I enjoy doing, what I care about, what I feel that a man should be, I’ve learned from my father.

He’s always loved cars. When he was in high school, he was with a local racing club. Auto shop was one of his favorite classes. He wasn’t one of those guys that had to be in auto shop because they didn’t have the brains for any of the higher classes – he was in it because he loved it. He went to college to become a shop teacher, and taught Auto Shop in one of the New York State schools. He was very well respected as a teacher. When there were race riots at the school he taught at, and some kids came on campus that didn’t belong there, one started to move on my dad to attack him. One of the other students intervened, saying, “Don’t mess with Mr. Z, he’s cool.”

My father isn’t a big man - he’s all of 5’3". When he was a teenager, he’d get pulled over by the cops, and they often thought he was driving on a fake license. Somehow, he finally made them believe him.

He met my mother when he’d come up in the summers to visit Downsville with his family. They married when he was 23 and she was 18. He worked for Datsun in Oneonta when I was young, then bought his own service station when I was five, so he didn’t have to travel as far to go to work.

The Station ended up bankrupting him, but it was more because he put too much trust in the people who worked for him than because he wasn’t a good businessman. A couple of his employees would take parts from the parts room and not account for them - and my father ate that. He didn’t want to believe the worst in people.

He could have a temper when someone else was wronged, though. But seeing him angry – those times were few and far between.

One of the things I respect the most about my father is that he and my mother are still friends, even after the divorce. Their breakup wasn’t pretty – far from it. But, somehow, he managed to remain friends with my mother. Sometimes, I think it was a lot in part for my sister and I, but no matter the reason, he did it. And I love him all the more for it.

Whenever something has hurt me in my life, my father has been there to hold me, to advise me, to listen to me cry and, often, cry with me. Even while we’re so many miles apart. And he’s never tried to live my life for me. He’s still been there, as supportive as ever, after I’ve made my mistakes. No matter how many times I make them, he’s still there. I don’t know what I’ll do when he’s gone.

He’s the one that taught me to love racing and science fiction. He’s taught me about cars, about sports, about computers. He’s prepared me to go out in the world with the tools I needed. He’s taught me that it’s ok to show your feelings, to show that you love someone, that hugs things that are quickly passed on. My father is the most wonderful man in the world.

And I miss him every day I’m away from him.

My daddy is the man who impregnated my mother and I never saw him again.


Daddy (and, yes, that is what me and my brothers (ages 38-47) call him), retired as an Engineer (construction, not train driver) with the RF&P Railroad in 1992 after working for the company for 40 years.

He is the quintessential strong, silent, type except when it comes to dealing with his grandchildren. Then, he he’s a little more demonstrative. He is a big, imposing man physically, but with the grandchildren he will always be “Bobo.”

He can build, fix, or repair anything. He built our house (he and my mother have been married for nearly 50 years and have always lived in the same house), built most of the furniture in it, built the wood stove that they use to heat a portion of it, built the log splitter he uses to split the wood for the wood stove, you get the idea.

When he and my mother went to Mexico for a vacation he spent most of the time sitting next to a construction site next door to the hotel watching them put the foundation in for a new resort. He even bought lunch for a couple of the laborers.

He’s generous with his time, if not so generous with his emotions. I know he’d do anything within his ability for not only his family, but his friends as well. With very little prodding he’d try to move the Sun out of the sky for you as well. He is incredibly long to anger…very much a slow burn. That being said, if he is angry at you you’ll know it in no uncertain terms. A pair of teenagers broke into our house over the Christmas holidays a few years ago and my dad happened to come home and caught them (he was more than 60 years old at the time). One ended up with about 5 teeth, numerous broken ribs, and a fractured skull. The other just sort of laid down and surrendered rather than get a first class ass whipping at the bare hands of my dad.

I wouldn’t trade him for the world and I love, respect, and admire him more than any man I know or am likely to meet. You should all be so lucky as to have Daddy as your parent.

My dad was the only son, and as such, was expected to pursue the priesthood. He entered the Jesuit seminary (it’s weird to see pics of him in a Roman collar) but decided he didn’t have the “call.” So he joined the Marines. I always found that to be an interesting transition.

When he was 22, he married my mom, who was 18. He worked in transportation in the Marines, and when he got out, he went to work for a foreign freight forwarder in Baltimore. I was the reason he didn’t make the Corps a career - he was offered OCS a few months before I was born and he wasn’t about to leave a very pregnant wife on her own. Anyway, he worked for (I think) 4 different companies, always dealing in export brokerage. He retired about 6 years ago, having risen to Vice President in his last company.

He was always very active in the Knights of Columbus - I never completely understood what he did, but we went to lots of parades and picnics when I was a kid, and the men all wore the feathered hats and capes and carried swords.

He and my uncle did a Polka program on the radio in Baltimore for a lot of years. Then my uncle said something indiscrete when the mike was open (oops) and he was booted off the air. Dad and Mom did the show for a while, before turning it over to my sister and her husband. He’s played the accordion since he was 10 - he’s 72 now - and he’s the reason I took accordion lessons when I was 7.

He was never very demonstrative, but I remember when I wanted to enlist in the Navy - I had to have parental permission and he was all for it. His support meant a lot. While in boot camp, he sent me a letter that reduced me to mush - he finally said things that he never seemed to be able to put in words.

In retirement, he doesn’t do a whole lot. He’s got a bad back and shoulder, bad eyes, heart problems, and who knows what else - for some strange reason, I never hear about his hospitalizations till after the fact.

This August is my parents’ 50th anniversary - I hope he makes it.

Yeah, I gave my dad a call after reading all of these posts too.

Sorry to hear that. Screw him, you can share our dads!

DaLovin’ Dj

My dad is the oldest of three boys raised on a farm in Mississippi. He grew up on the farm plowing fields, picking crops, swimming in ponds, hunting, fishing and learning how to fix things himself. He joined the army when he was 18(ish) and got out just before we started sending troops to Vietnam. He remembers being called to get all his stuff ready to move, his group being given a steak dinner (normally unheard of) and waiting for the bus to come for them. For some reason they got called off. I think he felt lucky, but also a little guily. He married my mom right before going into the army. They lived in married housing and had dates where they would drive their car to the local river (more like a stream), tie a six pack of beer to a string and let it cool in the water while they washed their car there. They eventually moved back to MS and had me five years later. My dad got a job at the phone company as a cable guy working outside. He went back and forth about going back to work with his dad on the farm, but farm life is hard and not always great for supporting a new family if you have a bad year. So he stayed with the phone company and now he works in the big fancy building downtown. He taught me how to hit a baseball, fish, and shoot a pistol, rifle and shotgun. He broke my nose with a frisbee twice when I was little and still feels bad about it. He still works out two or three times a week, fixes stuff himself, and shaves his head. He still teaches me how to fix my car (changing drum brakes was a challenge!) and he gets a little giggle when I am helping him work on my car while my brother is helping my mom cook. Of course I am sure my brother is being more of a help to my mom than I am to my dad! My dad is the type of guy that helps his neighbors with a smile on his face even if he doesn’t feel like it. He believes that people should help each other like that just because it’s the right thing to do.
Most importantly, my dad gave me a blueprint for the type of man I want in my life. My husband is enough like him that I see the strenghts they have in common, but not so much like him that it’s “icky”. :smiley: Everything my dad taught me set me up for a good life.