Today is not just a day for me to think about my dad and dads in general. It is also my dad's 61st birthday, the first day of summer (summer solstice) and the longest day of the year, all rolled into one day.
My dear dad was born in 1948, ten years after his only sibling, an older brother, and as a bit of a surprise. He was raised on a farm in a small town in Southern Illinois basically in the middle of nowhere and basically by three adults. He was kind of an adult himself by the time he was three. The story goes he went to his mom, threw down his bottle of milk and said "I don't want this bottle anymore and the name is Bob, not Bobby!"
He went to college in highschool and became an engineer. This is an amazing feat, considering his own father, a poor farmer and steel mill worker from the Great Depression era, was forced to drop out of jr. high to help contribute to the family income. My dad is very smart, very serious...except for his silly sense of humor if you catch him in a certain mood, haha... and I have never, ever known him to lie. He's an honest straight arrow who thinks absolutely like an engineer and is the first to do the right thing when there is ever a question about it. He isn't flowery or a feelings kind of person. I can count on one hand the number of times I've seen him cry. He was strict...and we did not get along when I was a teenager, but he is a good dad who provided for our family, is good to my mom, and a man I know I can trust. They don't make 'em like him anymore. Happy birthday and Father's Day, dad.