My young, handsome father towing his three daughters on a toboggan.

I lost my father on March 18th. The truth is, I didn’t “lose” him, I know exactly where he is. I’ve been to his grave at Forest Lawn. But even now, more than four months later, it’s hard to write “my father died” because I don’t want to believe it. I cry when I talk about him. I think about him every day and every night. I miss him more than I can say.

I spoke briefly at his funeral.  I shared an amusing anecdote that illustrated who he was as a father. I’ll reconstruct and post it at a later date. My daughter delivered a more moving eulogy which I am reprinting here.

“When I think about my grandpa, the strongest thing that comes to my mind is Love. My grandpa truly loved. Not just his family or his friends, but everyone and everything around him. He saw the beauty in everything… when there was darkness, he always found light.

Grandpa believed in us, every one of us, no matter what. He loved without judgment and without fear. He trusted in us, each of us, to hold the heart he gave so freely to us. And when we faltered, he forgave us.

When people talk about strength, often they think of the strength of the body, or a heart made impenetrable to emotion. To be strong, you must fight the world within and without, prove your domination over others and yourself. To be strong, you cannot care.

I think, instead, that it takes great strength to be kind. It takes great strength to forgive. To be vulnerable. To trust others and try to understand. To have empathy even when you’re strangers, to have sympathy even when you’re hurting. To look past darkness and ugliness to find light and beauty. To look at the world around you and try to make it a better place, any way that you can.
To try and fill this world with love.

He always said it was our greatest and most powerful gift.”