Happy Father’s Day! I hope you and your family have fun plans for this special time of year. Tonight I’m taking my son and daughter camping with my brother and cousins and their children. These days, when people don’t live in the same neighborhoods as their families, the way they did much more commonly in the past, we don’t see family nearly enough. When we can get together, we make sure to do it right, memorably, worthy of talking and reminiscing and writing about—and we have a blast!
Multiple generations of cousins camping out last year—going for a hike, playing a game,
and having a fantastic time together!
This Father’s Day is even sweeter because we’re celebrating my brother Rob’s fatherhood for the first time; his son Julian is ten months old now. He’s happy, fun, smiley, alert, and strong, like his daddy. What a special time for Rob and Abby. We can’t wait to celebrate with them on Sunday with our dad out at brother Mike’s in Long Island.
With brother Rob and my newest nephew Julian; with brothers Mike and Rob, my best friends!
Not everyone still has their fathers and grandfathers in their lives to celebrate with, but when we come together, we can summon them by talking about them. We can feel their presence by remembering our favorite moments and stories, and expressing our love. We also have people in our lives who are like fathers to us—role models and mentors we look up to and are thankful for. This weekend is for them as well.
No holiday weekend is more perfect to celebrate Ed, who comes from a big family and raised a big family with his wife, Mary. Born March 1, 1931, Ed is the youngest of six children raised near the Jersey Shore by a single and industrious mother. Ed served in the Air Force during the Korean War and became a career firefighter and deputy chief. The one trait that best characterizes him is his kindness. It is this very trait that motivated Nancy, his oldest daughter, to contact me about writing her dad’s memoir.
Above: Staff Sergeant Ed at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam, early 1950s.
Below: During one of our interview sessions.
“Dad taught us to always try and see the good in people,” Nancy told me. “That’s what needs to come across in his book. Dad and Mom raised five children, they made do without very much, and they worked hard. Most importantly, our energetic home was full of love. We all grew up to be happy and successful, and that’s because we knew our parents were always there for us without being overbearing or judgmental in any way. They let us figure things out for ourselves because they believed in us, but we could always go to them.”
Ed’s kindness will undoubtedly be evident in his memoir because it was so clear during his interviews. It was an honor learning about his leadership in the fire department of Teaneck, New Jersey, his volunteer work as a guardian of special needs adults—all of whom became like family—his famous neighborhood barbecues, and his success as a husband, father, and friend of so many. There is no way around it: kindness glows from this great American, and it will glow through his story.
10 Benefits of Sharing Your Story in a Memoir—My Latest Blog
The Benefits of Sharing Your Story in a Memoir are many, for both the Storyteller and the Storyteller’s family. From giving the ultimate gift to the people in your life you love and appreciate most, to engaging in an activity that promotes intellectual and emotional health, sharing your story is one of the most valuable ways to spend your time and energy. Read on to learn why.
The stories of your life or a loved one’s are legacies that create a cherished memoir. For more information visit LifeStoryMemoir.com.
Richard Squires, MFA, MA
Author & Publisher