No post on Father’s Day by Barbara Edwards

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Francis A. Radjeski

I I I oved my father. He worked long hours to keep us clothed and fed. He loved my Mom and his children. I have happy memories of going swimming at Hammonasset State Park and in Littleneck Bay. He could float and read the newspaper, often napping and having to be woke before he drifted out with the tide.

He grew a vegetable garden and I helped hoe and weed along with my sister. He loved flowers and planted a huge tulip garden to enjoy in the spring.

He was a good man.

During World War II he worked in the Brooklyn Navy Yards doing repairs on the various ships. He was a skilled electrician, plumber and welder. Those were the days before specialization. He spent his later years building environmental test chambers, installing the one used by Yale University.

For several years before he died he lived with me. He gradually became a cranky, grumpy, sometimes nasty old man. I still loved him, but I couldn’t understand his constant criticism. He accused me of stealing his money.  I was unable to handle his behavior and when he demanded to move back into his house it was a relief to put him on a plane.

I arranged for meals on wheels since he left the stove on and burned pots. I had his car disabled after got four traffic tickets for driving too slow and blocking the road.

I had guilt from failing as a caregiver and he continued to accuse me of outrageous acts until the day he died.

It took me years to remember the man who I loved all my life.

The sweetest memory? Every evening he would read to my sister and I from one of the classics. One chapter was the limit no matter how much we begged, but it was wonderful. I heard Treasure Island, Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Robinson Crusoe, Tarzan of the Apes to name a few.

Thank you, Dad, for my love of books and the written word.

 

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Author: Barbara Edwards

Riveting Romance with an Edge

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