44 Comments

Just beautiful, Chris. Thank you for sharing this.

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My dad, who grew up about an hour north of New Britain in Putnam CT, passed away 40 years ago on Fathers' Day 1984. He had just turned 54, and died due to sepsis following lung surgery two weeks earlier. He was my closest confidant, and as the oldest of five kids, I had the honor of being Ray Jr.

My first child was born via scheduled C-Section the following day.

I know now that I suffered from bouts of depression for a couple of years afterwards, but I always tried to emulate him as a father (although I never had a son) and a man, which I think kept me from a full-on depressive funk.

Great work as usual, Chris.

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Your story is surely familiar to a lot of people. At least it is to me. I have a fraught relationship with my own dad. Getting more challenging as his social filters and his short term memory (both) begin to deteriorate. Yet, he is at the same time a good man, who I have learned a lot of valuable things from over my lifetime. Your column gives me much to ruminate over. Thanks for sharing Chris.

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Happy Father's Day, Chris. This was a very nice tribute. I am sure, as a father, that you are trying to incorporate the things he did well, and then improve on the things he didn't. It is the best we can hope for as fathers. I am guessing you are a great dad.

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Such a lovely tribute. You sure can write, Cillizza.

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These 7 paragraphs describing your dad tell me that in lieu of telling you with words how to live, he showed you with his actions as best he could. He loved you very much.

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Chris, thank you for sharing this amazing, deeply personal insight into your life. My dad has been gone for over 19 years now, and I often think about him and whether I am measuring up to him as a man and as a father.

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A very nice tribute to your dad.

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I didn’t know you grew up in “Hard Hittin’” New Britian. Also the home of Ted Knight. I’m from South Windsor. We have Toto. I can relate to a lot of this. I’m an only child too and my single mom took me to McDonalds as a treat. I had parents with mental health issues. Holidays are not always easy and more often, they are hard.

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Good to remember. In 30 years you will be the only person who ever knew he lived.

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♥️

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Thanks for your recollections..

My dad dies twenty-five years ago and we didn't get along at all. But, after reading this the second time (I read it when you first posted it and it struck me then too,) I remembered he taught me a lot of stuff and also had a lot of great attributes that he shared with everyone else besides me and my brother.

Yeah, thanks.

And Happy Father's Day.

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❤️

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Jun 17·edited Jun 17

Your dad sounds like a lovely man, warts and all (and don't we all have a few of those!) A wonderful tribute to your late father.

I lost my dad over 30 years ago, only 3 years after losing my mother and only 5 years after my only sibling had died at the age of 38. When my father died, I felt this overwhelming sense of being alone, an orphan now that the family that raised me were all gone. I was married with two kids of my own but I had to consciously remind myself for a long time that I still had a family, only now it was my own.

Dad was a huge presence in my life even though he and my mother lived in the UK and I lived in Canada. But in their 70s they both surprised the hell out of me by emigrating here. I think my mum had qualms about such a big move, but my dad embraced it fully, travelling all over his newly adopted country and loving every minute of it, even if it only lasted few short years.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads, those still with us physically and those kept alive in our memories.

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I think you have a lot of your dad‘s good traits, Chris!🌻

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