Another August 27th clicks by, another notch marking one more year since my Dad passed away (2001).
I love this picture of him (not sure how old) at Coney Island (he grew up in Newark, NJ)- he looks sort of serious in is driving role and his suit (people got more dressed up in the 1940s to go to amusement parks), yet there is a very very faint twinkle in his eye, or at least I want it to be.
This is from a series of old photos I had scanned when I last visited my Mom, and part of the project to continue digitizing the stories recorded in 1994 by my grandmother (his mother).
In one segment she described a series event that happened when Dad was 7- he and so neighborhood kids were playing King of the Hill on a pile of snow, and Dad slipped and hit his head hard on the pavement. In her recanting of the story, my grandmother described what happened (with Dad’s voice filling in the background, both of them now voices from beyond the living):
It was a serious head injury, one that continued to plague him with massive headaches and likely some lingering brain issues the rest of his life. These were things I knew growing up, but still appreciate more and more how he spent his whole life battling the pain from this event, yet managed a career, raised kids, tinkered in the garden.
Looking at this photo makes me smile, and think that in photos, we can always be young, happy, and free of the things we deal with internally.
With love and missing you, "Old Man"
And in my Mom’s archive, I actually found the doctor’s bill for $40 for the surgery performed