Mom and dad on his 87th birthday
So, I suppose it's only right to begin this "blog journey" by mentioning my parents.
My father passed in November of 2010 after 87 years of a life that included service in the Pacific Theater of WWII as a Marine Aviator, 60 years of marriage, and (questionably most difficult of all) raising me.
Dad was several men to me over the years...disciplinarian, provider, coach, banker, driver, visitor (through several incarcerations and substance abuse treatments), and eventually hero and friend. He was raised in The Great Depression by a stern Italian that managed to keep food on the table through what have been some incredibly lean years. From him I learned honor and service. The 2 sentences I will never forget from him are, "I don't even know you anymore" and "I'm proud of you".
I was over 5 years sober (and still married...another story) when he passed. I got to stroke his head every day of his last week and was present at his funeral and Marine Corps burial. He is with me every day and miss him deeply. There are days when I can feel him talking through me to a newcomer at an AA meeting and I can see why he loves mom so much.
Now in my 40s, I have begun to realize how much of him I carry within me:
A warrior spirit, a heart for service, a significant and deep seated patriotism, and a knowledge (although not always acted upon) of honor and justice.
Since mom is still with us, I should probably ask her permission before writing anything about her...no matter how amazing she is.