Jan. 23rd, 2008

Over...

Jan. 23rd, 2008 01:46 pm
hhatcher: (Default)
My dad died this morning at 2:30 AM, with the full moon shining in his bedroom window. He would have been 58 on February 13th. It wasn't an easy death. He did not go quietly into the night, but I was there with him when he took his last breath. He had lost 60 pounds from the last time I saw him, shortly before New Year's. He looked so frail. I remember looking at him last night and thinking "This is not my father, just his body."

My father was intelligent, kind, funny. He was a romantic and an optimist, even when he was feeling powerless and bitter about the world. His favorite candies were Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Kit-Kats, and M&Ms, because they were easy to share. He knew I always hated school, even when I was little. Sometimes he would show up and pull me out of class, and we'd go out for a drive, or pick up ice cream, or go out to the beach.

He believed in treating people with respect and fairness, and even though it sometimes wound up hurting him, he never stopped believing that people were basically good at heart. He was passionate about anything he cared enough to talk about (sometimes to the point of my extreme annoyance).

My dad was as rich in friends and community as anyone I've known. His friend Stevie described going around town with him as "like riding with the Mayor". In this last week, there has been a constant stream of visitors and phone calls, well wishes, offers of help, meals delivered, people coming by to work on the house or yard.

You'll be missed, Dad. It may not have seemed that way to you at times, but you're leaving some mighty big ripples in your wake. A lot of lives were better and brighter for your presence in them, mine most of all.

Love,
IV

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Hank

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