My dad and I were close. He was easy to talk with, a good listener, avid reader, and my mentor. He taught me how to think for myself, make solid decisions, and stand strong in adversity. He was a powerfully faithful man and inspired me to pray meaningfully.
What I’m left with in his absence are his words of wisdom. Here are some of the sayings Dad repeated that still ring in my memory.
On health, based on his work in the Navy medical Corp: “When unhealthy, check the mouth.”
On faith: “Pray in the good times as well as bad.”
On understanding a foolish person: “When they said brains, he thought they said trains and asked for a big empty one.”
On the benefits of trade school: “Many-a-good bricklayer’s been ruined with a college education.”
On conserving energy: “Close the door! I’m not heating all of Oak Park!”
On being happy: “Tell yourself you’re happy, and you will be.”
On learning discipline and loyalty: “Everyone should serve a tour in the military.”
On medical intervention for his brain tumor: “No thank you. I’m not letting anyone make a zucchini out of me.”
On patience: “Someday that stone will come out of your shoe nice and easy.”
On wealth: “My brother has more money, but I am rich in the love of family.”
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