September 28, 1926-March 10, 1999
'where the ocean meets the sky, I'll be sailing'
My Father took great pride and interest in his celtic heritage.
the family crest bears the motto: 'hold fast' , and that he did.
through years of illness, set backs, bleak days, he held fast.
Held fast with a bravery and steadfastness that was remarkable.
he was a renaissance man, in that whatever he set his mind or hands to do, he did. from building boats, to carpentry, wood carving sketching, designing, even to teaching himself the intricate art of celtic knot weaving.
as a boy, growing up in rural louisiana he helped feed the family by fishing and squirrel hunting, tho' as an adult his compassion was given to all creatures. he joined the merchant marines at 14 and then joined the navy and served active duty in W.W.II. After his honorable discharge, he came to california where he met our mother, edna and they married. from that marriage came two daughters and a son.
he tried his hand at a few differing fields of work. Lobster fishing, he even dabbled in small theater and once played Caesar on tv, but settled into construction. he soon became well known for his personable attitude and strength. these were the days that work was done with sweat and a strong back. i can remember him carrying the three of us children in a hod carrier on his shoulder, and more than once, carrying a refrigerator on his back when we moved.
he had part in building some of the tallest buildings in los angesles and took part in the creation of the air force academy in colorado.
he moved up in that field of work to become a business manager, being the go between for the workers and union. his plans then lay in building a home and he and our mother traveling.
fate tho', took him on another path. he suffered from varying symptoms for years until he was diagnosed with hemochromatosis, which by then had affected all bodily organs, sapped his strength. during these early years, his son john was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma and passed away within six months. and again, tho with a broken heart, he held fast. he went through numerous surgeries and procedures over the years, and at one point suffered seizures for a five year period. but he held fast and rarely complained. until the day our mother heard him ask god to take him home, then we knew his passing was near
the house filled with family and friends with stories and hugs to share and good-byes to be said.
on March 10th, 1999 at 5:30 a.m. as his family gathered around him he passed from this life. i know he had his mother and son to greet him in the great beyond.
"never will i roam, for i know my place is HOME, where the ocean meets the sky i'll be sailing"