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Discovering Dad…Again

Last week I had the opportunity to go on a journey of discovering my dad again. My uncle Daniel came in town from Philly for 2 days. He was my dad’s younger brother.

While my uncle was in town, we got to visit my dad’s grave on what would have have been his 72nd birthday. I heard the first hand account about the day my father died because my uncle Daniel was the one who got the call about the fatal motorcycle accident he had been in. 

It was ironic that last week during my uncle’s visit, the shootings in Tulsa and Charlotte had saturated the news.  I was pleasantly surprised to hear how much of an activist my dad was. My uncle spoke of how he would have been so active in the movement and would have fought for social and racial justice.  He said, in case you ever wondered where you get your passion from about social issues…it’s part of your DNA.  I never knew.

A mind blowing surprise is that my uncle brought me a momentous from my dad that he had kept for 43 years waiting for the right time…alone time with me to give it to me.  So this autograph book was given to my dad when left Haiti in 1969 for Chicago and many friends wrote in it and then Family wrote in it in 1972 one year after my Mom died when he was leaving Chicago for Holland to do his medical residency. When his belongings were returned after he died in 1973, this was with them.

What started off as a promise a few years ago to take me to a football game when Chicago and Philly played at Soldier Field, turned into the most in depth, impactful and moving conversation I’ve ever had about my dad from his younger brother, my uncle Daniel. 

I’ve never had anything that physically belonged to my mom or dad besides a photo album, which sadly was thrown away in a state to state move years.  I’ll forever cherish our time together and the priceless gift he saved for me all these years.  It’s amazing do discover so many new things about my dad that essentially gives me a greater understanding of who I am. 
Dad, I miss you more than ever. Rest eternally.

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