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Essay Eulogy for Father

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Eulogy for Father


On behalf of my family, I want to thank you all for joining us here today to celebrate John’s long and amazingly fruitful life—a life of love extended, commitments kept, and faith observed.

John was born in Boscobel, and lived the vast majority of his life in this town. This church is the only church where this ceremony could have been held, and you, his family and friends, are all that he would have asked for today.

John was a responsible, loving son to his parents, and played a large and loving role in the lives of his Aunt Catherine, his sister Mary and her family, and his sister-in-law Patricia and her family.

Lt. John B, U.S. Navy, served his country overseas in time of war, acting as executive officer of an amphibious ship in the Pacific Campaign of World War II, and in time of peace, helping fellow sailors transition to civilian life during his tour of duty in the Pentagon’s Navy Annex following that conflict. As a veteran of foreign wars, he belonged to and actively participated in the American Legion throughout the rest of his days. And he was immensely proud of his three grandsons, one of whom couldn’t be here today, who likewise chose to serve this nation through military service.

John was married to Colleen for well over half a century. This loving union yielded nine children, two of which did not survive early childhood. These losses were great blows to this young couple, but in acts of deep faith and supreme optimism, they went on to have six more children, raising seven in all to successful adult lives. Those seven, in turn, are responsible for 12 grandchildren—and at least one granddaughter to be named later.

John was a lawyer, an attorney-at-law, for well over four decades. He...


... middle of paper ...


...ou, this man’s life raised few waves, yet somehow generated an enormous wake.

His was a life worth emulating: a life of great faith and generosity, a life of service to others, a life of simple joys. Our father couldn’t walk down a street without whistling, couldn’t pass a stranger without saying hello, couldn’t see a need without reaching into his pocket.

My Dad will always remain to me the man I hope someday to become.

My wife tells a story about hiding Easter eggs with Dad at some community event many years ago. He followed her around, constantly fussing over every single placement, carefully laying quarters in each. Then, as their task neared completion, he stuffed a host of extra eggs in the pockets of his sweater, telling her that these were for the kids who wouldn’t be able to find any on their own.

That’s the world John saw.

This was his life.


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