Friday, October 13, 2006

On This Day In History..... dad was born. It literally was Friday the 13th. To top that off, he came out feet first. What a way to start life! But he made the most of it. If he had lived, he would be 99 today. Old! :) He died 23 June 1981. By date, it was a long time ago, by emotion, it was just yesterday. My dad was what a lot of people would call a "character". He was born in Dallas, 1907, a middle child of NINE boys. Things were definitely a lot different almost 100 years ago. They lived on a farm in what is now one of the more traffic congested areas, which includes the land where Love Field was built. By the time I came along, the "farm" was a few acres, with chickens and a LOT of cats. We had a house next door, but the only memories I have of that house - burning my feet on the floor furnace and the planes flying overhead in the early morning. My dad burned books on the steps at UT, ran bootleg from Louisiana, married some rich guy's daughter while seriously drunk, got a divorce after 5 years, got to see Bonnie & Clyde's bullet ridden bodies (my uncle worked at the morgue), met my mom, got drunk with her dad on their first date (Oozo-the REAL stuff), married, joined the Army Air Corps after 7 Dec 1941, along with all his 8 brothers, was seriously burned in an explosion (saved a few lives), spent 18 months in the hospital getting skin grafts, finally recovered with the support of my mom, went on to raise four kids, none of whom he actually fathered, worked for the government (mostly at Langley AFB) until he retired in 1975. Then he and my mom moved back to Dallas (bought their first color tv), where he died. My mom got a letter from President Ronald Reagan thanking her for my dad's service and heroism. After he died, we went through his desk, finding some really strange empty envelopes dated 1957. Ever wonder why people keep some of the those types of things? My dad always reminded me of Jimmy Stewart. He was mostly the quiet type, until he got a few belts in him, then he could hold you in rapt attention with tales of his youth and of politics (he hated LBJ). My husband and I think my dad and his dad are up in Heaven talking politics, the law, and having a few cocktails. I think maybe his mom and mine are discussing the beauty of the world, home and children. I don't remember much about his funeral, but I do know the large church was standing room only, it was completely full, plus some. That tells you a great deal about a person. Happy Birthday Daddy! I miss you!