Happy Father’s Day

In honor of fathers everywhere, Happy Father’s Day! I’m so thankful for the fathers that have been in my life.

I’ll start with my own dad, William Charles Perkins, Sr. He was one of the oldest in a farming family with 11 children that lived to be adults. He married my mom after only knowing her for 2 weeks (true story). Crazy huh?

The father of six children, (3 boys, 3 girls) me being the fifth of six. The photo here is my dad holding my brother, Pat. I don’t think there are any pics of him holding me. I was the FIFTH after all and there aren’t very many pics of me as a child anyway. My mom was too busy taking care of kids to be taking pictures.

My dad was a good provider and diligent iron worker. He was an extremely intelligent man who skipped several grades in school. He never graduated from high school or went to college, but was always a leader at work, as a construction foreman or superintendent. He was highly respected by his peers.

As a child I remember him being a man of very few words. When he talked, we listened. He didn’t spend much time with us kids, but when my mom got tired of trying to get us to settle down after bedtime, she would have dad come to the bottom of the stairs. He just had to say one word in that booming low voice of his and we’d be quiet right away. He was a bit intimidating when potential dates came around in our teen years too.

I remember him being a fun grandpa to my sister’s boys, in the 70’s, but he passed away from lung cancer the year after I was married, just as I was beginning to know him as an adult. It makes me sad that Amy & Kevin never had a chance to be around him. He would have LOVED them and vice versa.

This family photo is from 1963, so I would have been 5 years old and the youngest in the family at that time. My younger brother, Michael didn’t come along for another 2 years.

Next on the list is Terry’s dad, Theron (or Terry to those who know him well). If he wasn’t around, my precious husband would have never been born and wouldn’t have turned out to be such a sweet guy. I’m so thankful that they moved to Arizona way back when.

I’ve heard many stories about the Hann family camping trips, vacations, and other escapades. I know that Terry (Sr.) was also an excellent provider and great dad. He has a dry sense of humor which most of his boys and grandkids have inherited (thanks Dad!). He loves to tease and is one of the sweetest guys I know.

This picture above is Terry standing by his (then) wife Carole who is holding their firstborn, (my) Terry. The other 2 are friends of the family.

This next pic is Terry, Carole with the 5 boys, Terry, Tom, Tim, Ted & Tod. Julie came along later. I can’t quite imagine having that many boys under one roof. They have all become responsible, caring adults so they must have done something right.

And now, let’s talk about the father of my children. What a gift he’s been to me and our kids. He’s always been a great example of a caring, responsible, patient, loving, helpful, encouraging dad. I remember before Amy was born he was so nervous about holding babies. After she was born he was a pro and helped with everything that needed to be done.

When the kids were a little older we shared responsibilities around the house. For a long time on weekdays after work, I cooked dinner and Terry took care of cleaning up the kitchen afterward, including loading the dishwasher. There came a point when we wanted Amy & Kevin to take turns loading the dishwasher, but Amy would have none of it. She said, “I’m not doing that. It’s MAN’s work!!!” We laughed so hard knowing just how bizarre that would sound in so many households. He was always a great help around the house even though he had a long commute and work schedule every day.

Terry was also a huge fan of Amy & Kevin, spending many hours at school & church performances, sporting events, plays and concerts. He passed along his love of reading to both of the kids and now they borrow books from each other. He also passed on his love of playing music to Kevin to the point where he was his backup bass player at church when Terry couldn’t play.

I’m so thankful that he has been a consistent, positive, loving influence to them (and to me) in a time when so many dads are either physically or emotionally absent from the home.

Thanks God for the gift of our earthly fathers!

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