This man stood for something.
He never drove past a broken down car,
or walked past a stranger who seemed to
be in trouble or need help.
He was the first to shovel out the neighbors
who could not do it for themselves.
Sometimes it delayed a family
vacation for hours,
but we were told to understand
why it mattered to him,
and to those he helped.
He believed that neighbors should be good
ones and he was always the first to plan
and throw the block parties of summer.
He believed children should learn
the honor of working hard
and to love God, country and family.
He never lied or cheated
and he expected
truth and decency from those he
loved, worked with and for.
We did not always measure up
to his high standards and were fearful
of the repercussions
but we were always forgiven
and always loved.
He was a man of honor and upon his
death I discovered a box brimming with
notes from strangers and friends
he had helped over many years.
No one had known about most of them.
In our small town it was
a privilege to be the "daughter of"
and also difficult to hide
any shenanigans or bad behavior
because he was so well known.
I was frequently caught,
punished and learned lessons.
He taught me to fish and made me put the worm
on the hook myself...every time
He taught me to run a table saw,
a drill, and a sander.
Long before Martha, he showed
me the proper way to iron a shirt
and put a crease in pants.
I learned to paint walls, refinish furniture,
unclog a toilet and sink, cook,
mop a floor the "Navy" way,
mow the lawn, ride a bike, and sled down hill..fast
We worked the garden together,
each summer we had one,
and I know how to build a proper campfire.
I learned to check the oil, drive a car,
pitch a tent in the right spot, and change a tire.
I was made to save 50% of my allowance,
tithe 10%, and balance my checkbook.
He never betrayed his wife,
his children, or family or friends.
When he faced his fourth cancer,
he decided to let his God decide
when he should go, and refused all treatment.
I cannot imagine anyone facing death with
less fear than he did.
He was certain what lay ahead and I believe
he was anxious to see his mom and dad again.
You see Robert Rennie
was a quiet man of honor also
and he taught his children well.
One of them just happened to be my
I love you