What makes a man a good father? I have asked myself this question many times over the last several weeks. Finally, it came to me when I started to look at my own father and my husband for the answer. Although both of these men were different in personalities, they had so much in common that made them great fathers.
Both of them worked very hard to establish themselves in their careers thus being able to provide for their families. Both were respected by their companies and coworkers and showed examples for their children of hard work, determination, and commitment. These men had strong religious values and convictions and shared them with their children. They supported their churches and took part in the activities of their parishes.
Getting a good education was paramount to them and they encouraged their children to do the same and when the children achieved this, they proudly celebrated with them. They also encouraged the same thing with their grandchildren. Life-long learning became a way of life for them, and if they didn’t know something, they set out to find the answers.
Both men became great community activists. My Dad was president of our church’s Men’s Club and his Golden Agers Club, and was on the Mayor’s Advisory Council for the Aged in the city of Springfield. My husband has served as a Little League coach, an EMT on the Suffield Ambulance and is on the board of the Ambulance Association and is treasurer of the Rotary Club. We have found our children following his example by being coaches, serving on the ambulance, and joining charitable associations.
Most importantly, these two truly loved their spouses and families. They were strong fathers and good disciplinarians. However, they really enjoyed their children and were always supportive of their activities, and their friends were always welcomed at our home.
All of this sounds ideal, but with all the ups and downs of normal family life, these young people knew that they were truly loved and had a dad who would do anything for them, who would lead them by example and who would always be there for them all through their lives.
Mary Ann Muska, Co-Editor in Chief