|My Dad, September 2009|
Today would have been my father's 96th birthday, had he still dwelt among the living. I almost feel guilty, so raw and fresh is my grief in having just lost my mother, that the pain of my father's passing - three years ago - feels most pale and ghostly by comparison.
|Mom & Dad on his 89th birthday, 2006|
|Me & Dad on my high school graduation day, 1977|
Dad loved celebrating birthdays, and there were so many memorable parties. I traveled to Sarasota Florida for his 80th, a bash he threw at Pelican Cove - the retirement community my parents were living in. Dad was in his element, surrounded by friends and family, drinking champagne and telling stories.
|Mom & Dad at his 90th birthday party, 2007|
The cheapest space I could find turned out perfect - the local Hungarian Hall, as my dad was always proud of his Hungarian (Jewish) ancestry, even though the only words he could speak in Hungarian were "Jo Istenem!" (pronounced yo ishtenem, meaning "Oh, my god!") and something filthy taught to him by a Hungarian cook at summer camp that caused his mother to wash his mouth out with soap when he repeated it to her upon his return home.
|Dad with daughter-in-law Bern and his 3 grandsons, 2007|
Dad, you were a good man, a good father. Mom loved you right up to the end and missed you, acutely, every day of her nearly three years without you.
Happy Birthday Daddy, wherever you are.
March 25th will always, for me, belong to you.
|Dad, 1961, photo by Bruce Steinhardt|