My Dad was great. He taught me a lot about how to move through the world. There is no shortage of stories from all of you about my Dad. Dad had a number of nicknames…. some from way back like BOOBALA…still are getting used today. Other more recent ones like Bobo, are the way we will reference him when we tell stories about my Dad. NOW ON THE TEE BOBO SVENDSEN!!! We all know what my dad loved, all things golf, he loved his friends, he loved his country, he loved Dewey Lake and Stuart Florida. Above all else he loved his family. Dad never missed a game or a recital. One of the last times he saw Layla, Alice and Parker was at their ballet recital. He was so very proud of his grandchildren. He loved my Mom. I remember stories about their special dates to Seal Blu downtown. It was Mom’s favorite restaurant and they were both so happy when they decided to spend some special time together. They would talk about going and then talk about how great it was and how special it made them feel. This one evening spent together actually lasted for a couple weeks before and after, I guess a good date night has that capacity. I could tell then they were grateful for each other. Dad taught me gratitude. Dad never thought he was going to come home from Vietnam, so he told me everyday from then on was gravy. Some of my own life circumstances have led me to believe that I am on the same gravy train as my Dad. I am extremely blessed with a wonderful family, and Dad, through his actions, taught me to never take this for granted. Layla asked me once why I come 10 minutes before the end of dance practice and watch. She is getting to that oh so charming age where I embarrass her. I replied that “papa used to come watch my practices so I thought I should watch yours’.” I no longer embarrass her when I come to watch. Thanks, Dad.
My Dad and I had a great life together as father and son. We have many fond memories. I would never cheapen our relationship by pretending we did not have our challenges. We share many of the same qualities 😉 and that is not always easy for a father and son to digest. My Dad and I both did the best we could.
When I was a boy, my dad and I were “Indian Guide’s.” I loved this time with my dad and he knew it was important for us both to share this time together. So important in fact that he decided to take on the role of FEDERATION CHIEF!!! He loved to be the CHIEF. One of the things we did as Indian Guides was to throw corn on the fire and say “PALS FOREVER” at the end of every campout. When I talked to my dad before he left the hospital, I said “I love you dad!” and he replied “I love you too, PAL!” His choice of words was not a mistake. He was recognizing for me and for himself that we loved and respected one another through it all. I love you dad… PALS FOREVER! Day In Day Out!