My hero

With Fatherís Day just a couple of days away, Iím sure I wasnít the only one searching for the perfect card yesterday. I had double the work load of most, though, since I actually had two cards to pick out. You see, not only is Sunday Fatherís Day, but Saturday is my dadís 75th birthday.

I can hear him groaning already; he hates it that I feel the need to tell everyone how old he is. But I canít help it. In my opinion, he doesnít look his age and he certainly doesnít act it.

There is a saying about how you can pick your friends, but you canít pick your family. Well if it is all down to luck of the draw, I definitely hit the jackpot with my dad.

It would be impossible to put my finger on just one thing that is special about my dad. Itís the whole package. He is without a doubt the strongest person I know. But with that strength there is also sensitivity, despite his best efforts to hide it. Heíll never admit it, but under that tough exterior, heís a big softy.

My dad has always been a star athlete, and highly competitive. He has always excelled at everything and isnít satisfied with less than perfection. That can be a tough act to follow, believe me, but it has always motivated me to try my hardest and do my best. He still shows me up.

Heís also incredibly creative. He has a certain touch with everything, whether he is working with wood, stone or paint. If youíve visited our house, you know what I mean.

My dad is someone that knows how to do everything. And of course, the way he knows to do it is the correct way, so donít even try to make any suggestions. (If youíve read my blog about changing my headlight, youíll understand.) Where heís acquired that knowledge, Iím not even sure. Heís a voracious reader, but it is hands on know-how as well. Trust me when I tell you that if you need to build, fix, fly or put the finishing touches on something, heís your man.

And when youíre done with all of that work, heíll be the life of the party. Heís got great stories, a lot of humor and people are just drawn to him.

My dad has a very distinct personality. Itís something of a joke in our house, and even among my friends that when someone does something that my dad would do, we call them Fred.

But laughing aside, he is the person you want on your side in any crisis. Maybe it is his police training, but he has this ability to remain incredibly calm, yet act quickly. And he will always do what needs to be done, no matter how dirty or distasteful the job.

Frankly, heís the one I want at my side all the time. As the baby of the family, he and I have spent a lot of time together over the years. I spent a lot of time riding around with him in his truck when I was little. I even ate most of my meals sitting on his lap. (This I think is where I picked up that horrible habit of eating off other peoplesí plates. Sorry about that.)

Even now, we spend a lot of time together. I cherish every minute of it, whether weíre golfing, snowmobiling, talking, walking, bickering, or watching NCIS (he got me addicted).

I love my dad with all of my heart, and my greatest desire in life is to make him as proud of me as I am to be his daughter.

He always has been, and always will be, my hero.

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