Monday, March 24, 2014

Another Day, Another Doctor PLUS MORE

It's not really about the doctor again today.
Just a little.

My turn (again) today.
Test results: All Clear!!

Brain results: Confusion.

The tests are fine, but there is no explanation for symptoms.
End of story.

But today, the story is about my dad.

As it hung for many years

Since I had time today, I finally was able to donate
this piece of art to a local VFW Post.

It's my daddy's ship.
World War II.

I will never know when or how my parents came into possession of it.
I don't remember it from my childhood at all.
But, I do know that it hung in my son's room for much of his childhood.
When he was done with his turn, it went back to me...then back to my mom...
then back to me again!

It is not a piece family members wanted any longer.
So, when we went to see the visiting Vietnam Memorial Wall
last fall, I spoke to someone about making a donation.

They were thrilled, as many at this local post are "Navy People".
So, good.
I felt comfortable with this choice.

My daddy didn't have any connection to this place or people.
But, if you knew my would know how OK that is.
I think he would be OK hanging out in my neighborhood.

When I lived in Northern Nevada and now, here in this valley...
my dad (and mom too) always learned about where I was living and jumped on board with local eateries, stores and activities.
He came to my Valley for all of my children's events.
He took shortcuts as the "locals" would and announced it every time!

My dad was a tease, a provider, and women's clothing manufacturer.
He was a family man,
a lover of dogs, especially my Sonny and the best BBQ burger maker ever.

He had a big heart and sometimes a big temper.
We loved him and he adored us right back.

My Daddy, WWII (he is on the far left)
My dad was a man of the same few jokes...the same few stories...
and the same few life-long friends.

One of his stories was of his Navy buddies who sang
MacNamara's Band aboard the ship.
I knew this song as a very little girl.  My son sang this song as a two year old.  When I searched the song out today and discovered that there were verses I never knew fit my dad's story perfectly.
Of course he didn't remember/sing all the verses.
He did it his way...for all those years.

Because he made up words, intentionally mispronounced words and completely butchered the English language (that my mother so lovingly taught to Jr. High students!)
"1...2...3...4...who do we appreciate!" ~ my dad.

I researched this artist and learned that service men could purchase these prints dockside when returning home.  There would be someone there selling them (I presume) and they would add the appropriate ship number to it.  So, my understanding is that they looked very similar, except for the number.  Also, they would add the service member's name on it.  I didn't even know my dad's name was on there until the owner of our local "Fast Frame" shop cleaned it up it for me!  He was kind enough to donate his services and totally refurbished it. The old mat had covered his name for all of these years!

Even that feels fitting for my daddy.

My funny dad, who lied about his age to get into the service early.
My dad who joined the Navy, but never did learn how to swim.
My dad, who played cards with his buddies aboard ship.
My dad, who was trapped below deck during a battle, resulting in him coming home a far different man than the one who had signed up.
My dad, who thought the Navy would give in and fix him food he liked better,
just like his grandma did!
They didn't, he ate.

Now, this artwork that speaks of my daddy, is all cleaned up and will be
displayed in some way at a local
VFW post in a dusty canyon, in the valley I've lived in since 1984.

I do hope I did well by him.
Honored him well.

He deserves that.

Love you Daddy.

Photos by NAE @pomegranatetrail ©2014

More information if you are so inclined  (or so I can find 'em again!!)

The ship 


Discussion board on artist 


AKW said...

This is just beautiful Nancy! Thank you for honoring his memory, and our memories of him.xoxo

Peggy said...

I enjoyed so very much reading about your dad, Nancy. And about the print of his ship, too - the process of learning more and finding it a good home must feel very satisfying. Lastly, your love comes through. xo

Nancy said...

Amy~ Thank you :) Yes, our memories...(voice trails off)

Peggy~ Thanks. This whole internet, Google thing is amazing for searching for information on our past. And the whole You Tube thing too!! I didn't really expect to find that song there!!

Tal said...

Aw, mom. Love this post. Also, that Navy picture hangs in Trey's room...(the one of them playing cards). I'll have to teach him MacNamara's band :)

Whenever I say blue, I have to add " pinto de blue..." Whatever that meant, or however it's spelled. Lol ;). Xoxo

Ms. said...

Lovely tribute in every way Nancy. Isn't it amazing to think of parents as young, imagine them with all their dreams and desires still to be proved. That's where research into a time period is so valuable, but never more valuable than the actual memory of the relationship we (you) had with them.

Anonymous said...

this is a really beautiful tribute and interesting even to someone who did not know your dad... so I'm glad you posted it.

Nancy said...

Tal~ I am thrilled that you stopped by the trail...and left a comment! The next time we talk, I will explain the Blue, de pinto de Blue!! I didn't know Trey had that pic in his room. we'll have to share more stories with him :)

Michelle~ Yes, it is sometimes hard to imagine them in ways we did not know them. I morn the leaving of this special generation.

Dee~ Thank you so much. It's good that we get to know one another, yes?!

saskia said...

such a lovely, loving tribute; it is so nice to read about your dad and what he meant/s to you

as I grow older with both parents still alive, all of us aging (gracefully) together, I find self wanting to know more and more about their lives and indeed ask: how was it for you when you were young, mum/dad? they now want to talk about it more as well....
our trip last weekend to Copenhagen and family was a step into her past, we look forward to many more trips like this

Nancy said...

Saskia~ How lucky for you to get to have some of these conversations now :) I sure miss being able to.