We asked our readers to share with us their favorite memories of their fathers for Father’s Day. We were so moved by all the wonderful stories—they made us laugh, cry, and smile with joy. Thank you to everyone for sharing your beautiful tributes to the dads in your lives—present and past.
Readers’ Memories of Their Fathers
My Grandfather was like my dad when I was growing up. He would always make up little songs for us to sing together, then he would get the recording stuff out and interview me and I would sing the songs. He would then dub a huge audience applause onto the tapes after I would sing. He is absolutely the most wonderful man in the world. I now have the pleasure of being his caregiver after all those years of him being mine.
– Sarah W.
My favorite memory of my dad is this: on laundry day, mom would have the clothes sorted out on the kitchen floor (yes waiting to go through the wringer washer!). Dad would start to cluck, and strut and flap his arms, sit on a pile of laundry and lay an egg! We thought he was a pretty amazing dad to be able to do that! Fifty years later it still makes me laugh!
I loved when my dad took us fishing. I can now appreciate all his efforts as he would retrieve our lures from jetty rocks and seaweed. And let us continuously cast with a smile. He was a great dad!
My Nanny told me my dad rocked me half the night before he died in an auto accident. I was 7 months old. Envious of all who had a dad.
We were little kids, sitting at the table having supper when my mom noticed a spider very close to the table. All of us kids started making a fuss. And my dad, trying to be funny, just said, “It’s only a spider!” and he turned his head and stuck out his tongue and pretended to eat the spider! Except, he misjudged, and sucked that big spider right into his mouth! He was committed, by then, so he just swallowed it. We were in shock, grossed out, but more than anything, amused! Great memory of my dad!
– Shonda C.
Daddy was my hero. He made me feel safe and loved always. When I was small we would go together to buy a Christmas tree. It would be cedar as we were poor. We walked home in the cold and he let me “help” carry it. Of course, he had the tree but I carried the top! He was so good. I miss him to this day. Love you, Daddy
– Vickie G.
My dad taught me how to put in a hard day’s work and the rewards that go along with it. Growing up a farmer’s daughter makes me proud to this day. He taught me how to fix things, work hard, love what you do, and enjoy time with family. Thanks, Dad!
– Colleen Z.
Him teaching me about the plants I can eat when I was about 4. I was amazed that peppermint was a green plant!
– Donna R.
My dad was in the Air Force for most of my childhood, but he was home for at least 30 days each year. He was a mountain of a man with the strength to go with it. When he was home he spent countless hours playing with my sisters and me. My favorite memory of him was twining my hands through his big hands with my younger sister on the other hand, he would twirl us around and around until our legs were almost straight out. My sister and I would squeal with joy! It’s been 42 years since my dad left us and I still cry on Father’s Day.
– Deborah W.
My dad always went out of his way to give us 7 kids a fun life. He hand made a tent trailer, two snowmobile toboggans, a summer cottage, a rowboat and many other things for us. He is 85 and still makes wonderful things for our family.
– Debi D.
This one is EASY. My dad would wake up and open the curtains and no matter the weather, he would tell us, “It’s a BEAUTIFUL day!”
He explained that no matter what the weather, your day is WHAT YOU MAKE OF IT!
– Lee H.
I loved sitting in the front seat of my daddy’s wooden fishing boat, speeding down the Waccamaw River in South Carolina. He was a master at catching fish and many evening meals consisted of his fresh catch of the day! He was also a master carpenter and built gorgeous wooden cabinetry. He smelled like sawdust when he came in from a day’s work. I loved sitting between him and my mamma in the front seat of the car. He passed away in 1976 of a massive heart attack at the tender age of 50. Love and miss him still today.
– Mary E.
My favorite memories still to this day are hearing about his time in Vietnam. My kids are fortunate enough to still learn from him. All the stories about the way of life in Vietnam and the massive rain storms for weeks, and the hard-working people in that country. We need to realize how fortunate we are!
– Kelly L.
I was a daddy’s girl all the way. I loved dancing with him as a child and even as an adult, I loved the smell of his aftershave (Old Spice), I loved his corny jokes, his beautiful green eyes, and the way he lit up the room with his presence. He taught me how to take care of myself in a man’s world (his workshop) by teaching me how to use all his tools. He was there for me in good times and in bad, but always let me make my own mistakes and learn from them. He held my hand when I was sick and he walked me down the aisle when I got married. He has been gone now for 23 years but he has never left my heart.
– Brenda G. W.
My old man was a truck driver. Before my parents split up, my dad took me on a delivery from Florida to Ohio. I slept in the cab, ate at truck stops and talked on the CB. I was 5, and it was the best time of my life (at that point). What came next was a bad time, but I think my own wanderlust was born in that experience.
I would take my dad dinner in the wheat field with cool lemonade, that was the best time.
– Mary C.
My father passed and my grandparents raised me from age 5 on their farm. My grandfather taught one lesson I have shared with my 4 children: “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop. Now do your chores!”
– Fred H.
Walking in the woods. Daddy would pick up a leaf and tell me which tree it came from. We took the leaves home and pressed them between 2 pieces of paper and took a pencil and copied the leaves. We made a scrapbook. I get the scrapbook out every Father’s Day and have a good cry each year since 1998!
– Robin B.
Back in the mid-70s my dad said to me, “If Alice Cooper and I were to die tomorrow, I shudder to think whose funeral you would go to.” Dad and Alice are both still kickin’ it!
– Kim C.
My favorite memory is when my dad and I would walk around the big vegetable garden we had on the farm looking at all the beautiful vegetables. I can still smell the air from back then in 1969, I was around 10 years old. There’s nothing like the smell of a farm: the smells of all our animals, of the fresh cut trees, the bales of hay & straw.
– Shannon M.
My favorite memory of my dad is of listening to him recite poetry. He was amazing. Until he passed at age 95, he could still recite very long poems. Some of my favorites include The Face on the Barroom Floor, The Cremation of Sam McGee and If (by Rudyard Kipling). Dad was a wonderful man; he married my Mom when she was a widow with five kids under the age of 12. He was a great husband to my Mom, a good provider, and a fabulous chef, too. I miss him very much.
Oh, and it was my dad who introduced me to the Farmers’ Almanac–he bought one every year!
– Natalie J. V.
Sitting on his shoulders on the back of his chair “styling” his hair with barrettes and ribbons!
– TaRell D.
I lost my dad to cancer in 2009. I used to take him to his chemo treatments and bring him home. It was about an hour away. I had a SUV with front heated seats. One day in mid-summer, we were leaving one of many chemo treatments. About 20 minutes down the road, he started to say that he felt like he was running a fever. Then a few minutes pass and he states, “I don’t know what was in that chemo but whatever it was it must have been good. Now it feels like my butt is running a fever.” He started to get really worried and frantic, because he had never felt anything like it before. So I pulled over because he was starting to scare me. Well, low and behold, the lights on the heated seat button were lit up. I guess he accidentally pushed it on when he was climbing into my SUV.
– Kristin T.
The best memories were Sunday drives. Dad would find roadside produce stands, buy a turnip, cut it, salt it with the shaker from the glove box, and share it with me cause neither my Mom nor brother liked them. As he drove, he would honk the horn and wave at total strangers.
– Linda G.
Dad was a career military man, having joined the Navy when only 17 retiring at 37. Mom raised us up in his absence, but when dad came home there was happiness and joy and tears as we met him at the pier with hundreds of other families. I remember mom writing letters at the yellow marbled Formica-and chromed kitchen table. We still live in his last port of call, and I still swell with tears while watching the local news when I see the ships pull in and the sailors lined up in their dress whites eager to see their happy awaiting families and in their vision of home, their families’ hopes realized with their return.
Mom always dressed us up in our Sunday best, she always looked like a model in her very fitted clothes of the 60s fashion. When we would finally find dad, he would pick her up as they hugged and greeted each other. My brother and I would giggle, and say how strong our dad was for this act of jubilee with our mom. Stronger than Mighty Mouse even!
Dad rests in a field of heroes at the Albert G. Horton cemetery in Suffolk, Virginia. I take care of mom now. I believe they again will be joined after such a long separation, and he will lift her up in loves warm embrace when the time comes. These days of reunion I will never forget. They were the happiest days as a family united and together I can remember. Happy Father’s Day, dad. We sure miss you!
– Joyce-Marie M.