Today is the 25th anniversary of my father's death.
A patriot born on the 4th of July.
He died in his Stealth while on a secret night mission.
The whole thing was very hush, hush since the Stealth was still top-secret material.
It left a lot of questions and not much closure.
This 4th of July Daddy would have been 60.
He always said the fireworks were just for him.
This year, with the incredible viewing distance of Colorado, I saw 5 different firework shows.
And I thought there were so many that night because it was his 60th.
Time is an incredible thing.
While grief certainly does get easier with time,
It is always surprising how strong the emotions still are.
I was a toddler when he died.
And I often wonder about how different my life would have been if he hadn't.
I think I'd be a pretty different person - if not a completely different person.
Which then makes me wonder - would he be proud of the person I did become without him?
I sure do hope that I live up to his standards of honor, humility, and service.
In the words of my father in his contingency letter to my mom:
"Whatever happens, let's turn it for the glory of the Father. Take this loss as an opportunity to praise the Lord. Please join me and praise Him for all His blessings. And praise Him for taking me from the earth and bringing me home to him... the Lord in his Divine Wisdom has said it's time."
While I'm not a religious individual, I find comfort in his complete peace that he was serving his country and doing what he loved to do, flying, and that he did not let fear inhibit him. He literally went out in a blaze of glory. What an inspirational reminder to live life to the fullest and to do what you love and have faith that it will all work out the way it is supposed to.