Being that this past Sunday was Father’s Day, I wanted to take a moment and tell you about one of the most influential men in my life.
My dad was raised in what you might call the back country of western Colorado. He grew up with five siblings and had quite an adventurous childhood from what I have been told. After high school he joined the U.S. Army and was quickly sent to Vietnam during the War.
I have been reading through letters my dad wrote while he was serving his country, letters he wrote back to his family. Somehow, these letters have made it all the way to England with me where I am reading back through them. I don’t know exactly why I’m fascinated with these handwritten notes other than I am a big fan of history and they provide a glimpse into this part of his life.
My dad was one of the most sacrificial men I have ever known. His desire to love and serve his family were a blessing beyond anything describable. The investment he made into my life and my brother’s is immeasurable. Not a day goes by that I do not reflect on some memory of my life and see how he has influenced me. Often I recognize some of the crazy things I must have put my parents through growing up, and yet he was always there with love (even in discipline).
He was a wonderful example of Christ to me and our family and for that I am eternally grateful.
He was one of my biggest heroes. Through his life and death I witnessed a man who served God with all his heart, loved his wife more than himself, and sacrificed so much for his family. He was a man of integrity and by his life I am continually challenged.
Last October marked the 8th anniversary of his battle with cancer, a battle he did not win. I have learned a lot over the last 8 years. I have seen God’s faithfulness through all of the challenges I have faced and I know that as I continue on this journey, his faithfulness will abound.
I remember the first time I realized my wife will never meet this man who has influence me in so many ways; my future children will never know their grandfather. These thoughts do make me sad because of the man who my father was. I am so proud to be his son and I dream of one day being half the man he was.
It is kinda crazy to think that I am a photojournalist living in the UK. I studied Molecular Biology in university and didn’t even get a real camera until my dad passed away. That first camera–the source of one of my dad’s hobbies–opened up a world of creativity to my soul and I have never looked back or thought I should be doing something different.
In more ways than I could ever imagine, I am the man I am today because of my dad.