1051 13th St. SE, Hickory, NC 28602 • 828.229.7877 • firstname.lastname@example.org MORE THAN A NAME What My Father Gave Me
W hile he may have passed on 21 years ago, I can still see the ways my dad influenced my life and the lives of my siblings. He was always full of life and an utter original. He was a fantastic cook, and I especially loved his biscuits and gravy. He loved it when the family would gather around a meal he’d just made. Those moments were incredibly special to him and to all of us. My dad would do anything for you if you were good to him and his family. We were never wealthy growing up; both Mom and Dad worked full time to provide for me and my brothers. But
vacation hours fixing our boat so we could go out on the lake. Meanwhile, his workers sat up at the house and did not help. To my dad, that was unacceptable — and when he returned to the house, he made sure his friend knew it. Dad held people to the same high standard of responsibility and respect that he held himself — including me and my brothers. At dinner, we ate what was in front of us, didn’t complain, and washed our dishes. Whenever someone asked why we didn’t have a dishwasher, my dad would just motion to me and my two brothers and wryly say, “I already made three dishwashers.” He made sure that we knew he was in charge, and
“He loved it when the family would gather around a meal he’d just made. Those moments were incredibly special to him and to all of us.”
I think that losing him so early on in our lives really taught us the importance of time with family. It definitely stuck with me, at least. I never let work dictate my time outside the office. I spend it with the ones I love. A part of his legacy lives on in our family. My dad’s full name was James Preston, and he gave it to me and my brothers, James and Preston. Those names were only the beginning of what he gave us.
while we didn’t always have what we wanted, our parents made sure we had everything we needed. Dad was a supervisor at a factory, and the people who worked for him had less than we did. He never let our lack of wealth prevent him from being generous with his workers. That generosity went insofar as his workers would reciprocate it. Our house growing up was on a lake, and during the week of the Fourth of July, he would open up our home to be used as a vacation spot for some of his workers. One summer, Dad spent some of his precious
that our schedules would accommodate his, not the other way around. That being said, he would always come to our defense if we needed him. Family was incredibly important to my dad. His parents were not present in his life growing up, and he lived with his uncle for a long time. When he had a family of his own, he took advantage of every opportunity to spend time with his kids and his grandkids. He had a way of getting everyone to gather around him when he told stories, and I think those were probably some of his favorite moments.
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