My Dad died when I was 18. In many ways I had way too little time with him. But what an impact he made on my life! He was a very vibrant person. He was likeable because he liked people and was very social. He could talk to and relate to anyone, no matter their station in life. He taught me that. He taught me the importance of liking each person. He believed in the dignity of people and helping others.
My Dad loved food and passed that on to me. He showed me how to bake chocolate chip cookies. In fact, he baked a batch the night he died. He was a determined and hard worker but always put his family first.
I knew without a doubt that he loved me and grew up in the glow of his affection for me. He was strong but not afraid to show his emotions and he shared important things with me even though I was a child. I could tell that he saw my intelligence and he gave me the confidence to be myself. I'm 51 now and I still miss him terribly and can still cry thinking about him. When you love someone that much I guess you never stop missing them.