A dad I never met

In addition to recognizing how great my own dad is this year on Father’s Day, I’m feeling kind of inspired to recognize how very important someone else’s father came to be in my life.

Back in 2003, one of my oldest and closest friends lost his father to an illness that I assumed was either caused or exacerbated by smoking. I’d never met this man. Wouldn’t have known him from Adam if I’d seen him walking down the street. But the day he died, I decided that I would be one less person that my friend would lose to smoking. And I decided that very day that I was going to quit after almost twenty-five years as an addict. I set the date for about a week later and on 3 November 2003, I had my last cigarette. I never once looked back after that day and haven’t touched one of those disgusting things since.

So in a certain way, this dad that I’d never met saved my life–or at least significantly enhanced and lengthened it. I don’t think I’ve ever told his son this story and I probably should have before now, because the son obviously played a pretty big role in my decision too.

Father’s Day just seemed like a good time to mention it. So thanks to father and son…