Happy Birthday, Dad

Today would have been my dad’s 86th birthday. He has been dead for almost five years now and it seems like forever. While I still miss him terribly, I am so very thankful God blessed me with both my parents for as long as I had them. I was blessed to grow up in a family that loved me, disciplined me, and instilled a sense of right and wrong in me. 

Life has not been the same without him, for my mom while she was living, or for me now. My dad was the leader of our family and he led primarily by example. He fought for our country in World War II and worked hard all his life to support us. He was both smart and wise beyond his formal education and his years. He loved his hometown, Van Wert, OH, and worked tirelessly to make his community a better place to live. He taught me how to be a man and instilled in me a sense of responsibility and honor. He insisted that I do the right thing and comport myself in ways that would not bring me shame or dishonor to our family.

In short, he helped teach me what it means to be a Maney.

He had a gentle sense of humor but was not afraid to tell me what he thought or when he thought I was headed down the wrong path. I cannot think of a better way for a father to love his son. Thank you, papa.

So happy birthday, dad. I love and miss you. I look forward to the day when we are reunited, never to be separated again. That will be God’s doing and I am thankful that we both believe(d) in this God who loved us and gave himself for us in a terrible and costly act on the cross so that our reunion is possible and will never again be interrupted.

What about you? How did your dad (or mom, or both) influence you?