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Memories of Daddy

"My father and death:  the two cannot go together. But they did. They met one early morning, June 30, 1991. The thought of it is so painful. Apart of me has died and is buried in Arlington Memorial Gardens. In a little bend in the road, under a huge oak tree, they placed him. I know that his body was only the dwelling place for his soul and spirit, but, how dear is the thought of that part of him...

The last time that I saw my father living was June 27, 1991. He brought mother up to my house because I was to take her to a doctor's appointment. On the way up to my house, they had stopped at an apple orchard, looking for early apples. He brought pickle loaf and cheese for sandwiches. When we left for the doctor, he was resting on the floor and was still there when we came back. Turning around in the doorway as he left, he grinned and waved goodbye to Willie and me. After walking to the car, he sent Jackie back in to tell me to put the dog in the shade as it was very sunny.

That was almost six months ago. The apples have come and gone. When I see an apple tree full of apples, a fencerow full of blackberry blossoms, a sign   reading, "Strawberries for Sale," or acorn field, I think of him.

My first memory of him was as I was running down a country road to meet him. He stood waiting with a bag of candy for me. I also remember him picking my sisters and me up on rainy days from grade school.

He took us fishing at Springdale Lake and brought catfish home. He would put them in the stationary tub in the basement, and let us watch them swim around. Somehow, catfish with whiskers fascinated me. I remember him taking us to Coney Island where we rode the Island Queen, a huge boat.

On trips to my grandparentsí home in Kentucky, I remember sitting on a split rail fence and watching him slaughter hogs. My grandma would then make delicious little round sausages and can them in mason jars. On those trips, my grandpa would sit on the front porch while Daddy cut his hair and trimmed his mustache for him.

May 6, 1995

My dear, dear father. It will soon be four years since my father died. He always watched for me on his special days. Sometimes I feel so strongly that he is watching from heaven.

Sunday, June 30, 1996

It has been five years ago today that my father died. My dear father, how I loved him. I have often thought of the love of a child for a parent. It reminds me of a huge tree that is very old. If you tried to dig it up, you could not, because the roots would be wrapped around the very bowels of the earth.

June 30, 1999

I love you, Daddy!

Marcella Fay Cole

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