My Dad passed away almost 11 years ago, and today would have been his 90th birthday. As soon as I heard the date on the radio, I started thinking about him and all of the memories of our good times together.
He was a sports nut, especially when kids were involved. He coached Pony League Baseball before I was born and had team photos of many of the men who were leaders in the area. I often wondered if that was just a coincidence!!
When I was a kid, there weren’t a lot of opportunities for girls to be involved in sports, but he made sure that I knew how to catch and throw a softball and that I understood all of the rules to Football, Baseball and Basketball!!!
He taught me how to drive and I spent many weekends going with him to our farm (30 miles away) so that I could drive. He laughingly said that he was going to enjoy the time while he could because he knew that I wouldn’t be going with him once I got my driver’s license. I remembered those words and enjoyed the time with my kids as well.
When I got involved in the pep-squad, he was always there in the parents section yelling for the team too. He ran a gas station on a prominent corner in Abilene, Texas and many of my friends and fellow students would go by and talk to him.
He was a handy-man deluxe and I spent many, many hours in the garage helping him with his various projects. I think of him every time I need to pry something apart (he had a wonderful lecture on using levers), spackle a hole in the wall, or fix a venetian blind. Most of these projects were performed while listening to the Houston Astro’s on the radio.
He loved our kids and were so proud of them. He loved it when they got old enough to start playing baseball and softball. When Brian decided to switch to Soccer, Dad immediately started to watch it on TV and learn the rules to the game. Unfortunately, he never got to see Brian play in person, although he did see a few videos.
His health deteriorated and he was seldom able to play with the kids, but he loved to watch them when they were together. He always talked about the day that he told Jenny to “choke up on the bat” and then she went out and hit a home run!!
Jenny continued to play Fastpitch softball all during school, and was named the Georgia State Player of the Year after her senior season. After one particular game, I remember her saying that she wished G-Pa could have been there to see her play because he would have been proud of her!!!
His service flag was used at the softball field during all of the home games and she said that it felt like he was there too!!
He was known as “Uncle Buddy” to all of my cousins and I remember the fun that we had at the funeral home remembering all of his antics!!
……..that is what I am remembering now!!!