Mag's Dad, Emil, left us on Wednesday, May 20, 2004. Emil was a quiet man, quick to laugh, yet never seeking attention for himself. His family was everything to him.
Part of his family was his youngest daughter, my beloved Magster.
We all knew Emil had served in the United States Army during World War II. We just never knew to what extent. So it was quite a surprise to find out that he had earned 5 Bronze Stars! Five. And never a word. If that doesn't tell you everything you need to know about the man, I don't know what does...
I guess I don't have to tell you that this second tragedy in three weeks has hit Mags and me pretty hard. Emil was a "Real Guy."
His son, Dan, says it best:
"Our Dad was a very simple man who did not have a lot of advantages growing up. He lost his Mother at a very young age. As a matter of fact, he was in foster care for some years because his Dad had to go out & work and there was no one-else to take care of the children.
He never got past the 10th grade of high school because he had to make sure his brother and sister went to school. He would wait at the back door of the school for the inevitable; his brother & sister (uncle Karl & Aunt Rose) to try to play hooky.
In spite of his lack of education, he was very good at a lot of things, especially math. I know this for a fact, because I probably would have failed it if not for his coaching.
He served his country bravely in World War II in Europe, including the Battle of the Bulge. He never told us much of his experiences. It wasn’t until recently we became aware that he received 5 bronze stars for bravery. He was quite a hero.
After the war he met and married our mom, who was truly the love of his life. Together they raised 3 children, me and my 2 younger sisters, Rosemary and Margie
As his son, I had my heroes as a kid; Ritchie Ashburn, John Wayne, Willie Mays, and so on, like any other kid.
It wasn’t until I became a man that I realized that a real hero was living in my house all this time, my Dad. Here’s why:
He worked very hard at a job that he did not like for 35 years, never complaining, putting a roof over our heads and food on the table.
The most important things in his life were the welfare of his wife and children and he was always, always there for them.
He never asked for anything for himself.
He was a very protective father to his daughters, keeping a close eye on anyone they dated.
He never knew it, but much of what I am today was because of his influence. He taught me most of my basic values; have a strong work ethic, work and study hard. He is, and always will be my hero.
He had a great love for and prayed daily for his children, grand children, and great-grandchildren.
Now his work is done. He fought a long battle with a debilitating illness and suffered the loss of his wife.
Now he can rest his weary head with our Lord and our Mom.
We will love you and miss you always".
(Out of respect for Emil, there will not be anything new posted here until Father's Day.)