Every year I write a tribute to my Dad on father’s day. My Dad is like one of those men from the old movies. The hero. A man of few words rides into town, stands up for what he believes in, and touches everyone around him.
He leads by example: Loyalty, honesty and spirituality. Always keep your word. Hold family close and God Closer.
My Dad has worked very hard to make a business and a reputation many would envy. He’s worked hard to give his family the kind of life and opportunities where we would want for nothing. He has integrity and honor, and those are not easy qualities to find these days.
He has been a wonderful example of a man, a father and a human being. From quietly asking mom about our dates to sharing boiled peanuts and beer, to watching thunderstorms and lighting with us. To teaching me how to sing silly songs, teaching me why it’s important to watch the news and be aware of the world in which you live.
He has taught me so many things about life, just by example. And he is the best father a girl could ever hope to have. I have so many wonderful memories of him growing up, and as an adult. Like him, try to read fairy tails to me and mispronouncing the names – like “Ra-pun-zel”, or reciting the bedtime story of “Once upon a time, a deer drank wine…” To holding me while I sobbed when I thought my mother was dying, to our first father daughter dinner when I was a teenager.
Then the is “Piddles Jumping Spunker” and Chief Beer Fetcher in Charge (CBFC), can’t forget being the Cowstail, or all the lessons on the bottom shelf. There were all the times he, as a typical protective father, scared any young man who came to the door to pick his daughter up for a date. There was the one time he tried to teach me how to drive, and both of us returned scared and barely speaking.
There is the time I ran over the water pump with the riding lawn mower and he had to fix it (the pump not the mower) and all the things I accidentally busted, broke r short circuited around the house. To all the conversations we may have on the phone now, however short, whatever the topic, are always treasured.
There is hearing all the stories of his youth, and when he blew up the river bed with dynamite, and how he hid an alarm clock taped to one of his teachers desks at school. To his trips at Oscars Br in NYC, to all the slides and stories of when he would dive and was a dive master. To all the amazing things he has designed in his career, and last year, I went to the Smithsonian and finally saw, up close, the missiles he designed.
He taught me how to change the oil in my car, how to rotate my own tires, change the break pads and calipers, check the spark plugs (when cars actually had spark plugs). I remember going out to dinner with him, and how he opened my doors for me, pulled out my chair, found out what I wanted to eat and ordered for me. Always wanting to make sure that I was happy.
I will always love his voice, his hands, the way he smells and his little smile. Yes, I will always love my Daddy. The first man to make me feel safe and secure, the man who has always been the example of how a man should treat a woman, and how I should expect a man to treat me.
And he gave me the best Christmas present I have ever been given. One he hand made a wonderful case for my Barbie Dolls, complete with a little mirror for them, a place to hang all their little clothes, and he even hand made these little wire hangers for all their clothes to hang. I still have it and it is one of my most cherished possessions.
For these and so many reasons, too many to list, I am proud to call Jim Burch my Dad. If I could have looked out and chosen who my father would be, I would have chosen you.
Love you Dad. Happy Father’s Day.