I have to write a “Letter of impact” regarding my father’s sudden and tragic death. This is to be read in court this Friday, December 9th. I have procrastinated as long as I possibly could so I thought I’d just write it as a blog post, I know how to write one of those! So here goes….
My Dad taught me a lot of things: He taught me how to ice skate and he taught me how to fish, but I always made him put the worm on the hook. He taught me how to change my oil, he played catch with me and came to all my softball games. He even let me bring all my girlfriends up to our cabin in the summer and he took us tubing behind his boat, he made us campfires, and always made us breakfast in the morning. He helped my volleyball team make our parade float and he drove the truck in the parade. He loved Bloody Mary’s and I love them too.
He taught me to be a really good person and work hard, really hard. Don’t do it if your not going to do a good job. I’ve even shoveled snow off the roof of our cabin with him (what?). He walked me down the aisle when I got married and we danced to the FleetWood Mac song Landslide. My kids went fishing for the first time on Grandpa’s boat, and now they will never get to go fishing on Grandpas boat again.
When my Dad road his motorcycle from Minnesota to California and stayed with us for a week he taught my daughter some new card games. I just cannot bring myself to play those card games with her when she asks. I pass by the bed where my Dad slept for a week and I think of him, daily. I see a Route 66 sign and I think of him, a motorcycle passes me on the road and I think of him. I see the Harley Davidson Logo and I think of him. If anyone even says the state “Oklahoma” it takes my breath away.
It is a punch in the gut whenever any of these things happen.
I consider myself a very tough person and this has literally rocked my world. A piece of my heart is gone forever and it hurts. I understand and can even accept death. I can handle it, it’s life. It happens. But what haunts me is holding his hand, watching, listening and seeing him die right in front of me. This is something I will never get over and something I can’t handle. Has my Dad’s tragic death affected me, YES. Has it changed me, NO.
My Dad lived life to the fullest and literally that is exactly how someone described me the other day. He knew how to have a good time, worked hard and enjoyed his life. I will continue to live my life the same. I have taken on a new appreciation for the warmth of the sun, the wind in my face and the clouds in the sky, because I know that’s how he is still with me.
To the person who hit my father, I hope you can one day forgive yourself, because I forgive you.
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