Remembering My Dad
Last week we had a private funeral service for my father and here is the eulogy I read:
Bill, my dad, was many things to many people. He was a storyteller, lots of fun to be around, hard working, resilient, happy, kind and the list goes on and on.
One thing we all were familiar with was his ability to tell a story. Some of the stories were adventurous like the time he was riding a bicycle built for two through the center of town and got pulled over by the police or the time he fired a cannon off in front of the police station and freaked all the officers out inside.
Another type of story he loved to tell was the accomplishment type story like driving up and down Mt. Washington multiple times, or driving to Keegan, ME just to see what was there or racing a car with his drone and winning or how he had the fastest stock motorcycle in the world and he got it up to some ridiculously unsafe speed or having driven to every state in the continental US.
The other type of story we seemed to hear more than any other involved the injustices he suffered, like being nailed to the roof by his brothers or how my mom had a new car every year they were married. He had a lot less of those type of stories in recent years, because he was happy. On the rare occasion he did have a new one it always made me laugh when Anne would call him out and set the story straight.
Every once in a while you could get a life lesson from a story, well besides don’t drive 165 MPH on a motorcycle, one that changed me for the better was from a trip we took to Washington DC when I was a kid. We were in line at this fancy hotel and the woman in front of us was complaining about something to the receptionist and my dad patiently waited his turn in line. We finally got to the front of the line and my dad made a funny comment about the complainer to the receptionist. She thanked him for his patience and upgraded us to an amazing room overlooking the city. Sometimes being patient and funny pays off.
The stories were almost always exaggerated in some way, but that is what made him a great story teller. I am thankful to have picked up this skill from him and look forward to passing on these stories and many more.