Wednesday, December 23, 2009
A Father Remembered
My father died last week. He lived a long life -- long enough to see his children grow up and have children of their own. In fact, he lived to see and enjoy two great grandchildren.
A year and a half ago, I marvelled in this space about how a man who grew up without a father managed to become such a good one himself. And I was immodestly pleased when he responded to that post publicly.
We no longer live in Montreal, where my wife and I grew up. But I try to call my parents every weekend; and my father always gave me his take on each Monday morning's post. You should understand that my father's political opinions -- on most subjects -- were far different than my own. Even though I bear his name, he was never out to convert me to his worldview.
In fact, one of the many lessons he taught me was that we could disagree -- profoundly -- but we did not have to fight. Perhaps he came to that conclusion as a World War II veteran. He certainly had no patience for war stories. He valued his friendships with other veterans; but he took no pride in someone else's total surrender. He refused to keep a gun in the house; and when -- as a kid -- I asked him why, he simply said, "I had enough of that during the war."
To say I will miss him doesn't capture the way I feel. But I am confident that he has earned his reward.