FATHER'S DAY ESSAY HONORABLE MENTION: ‘Daddy knows everything’

My Daddy knows everything.
You might expect that comment from a child bragging to his friends on the playground, but I am a mother and grandmother myself, and this statement says clearly how I feel about my father, Lynwood Shackelford.
Daddy is the “go-to guy” in our family. He knows about so many different things. He can tell you how and when to plant flowers, vegetables and trees so they will thrive. He knows how to fix almost anything. He even knows how to cook and preserve foods. If a question comes up in a conversation, it isn’t long before someone says, “We should ask Daddy (or Pa, as his grandchildren call him).
Besides the benefit of his almost 78 years of life experience, he has never stopped learning. He is constantly learning by reading, listening and observing the world around him.
Daddy knows how to provide for his family. We didn’t have money to throw around when I was growing up, but I don’t know of a single thing I needed and didn’t have. When I was preparing for a school or 4-H trip, Mother would give me money, then Daddy would give me a little more – “just in case.”
He also knows how to protect his loved ones. There are many things I do (or don’t do) daily because of Daddy’s warnings. For example, I never put a knife in dish water because he told me about someone who got a bad cut that way. I always turn off my car’s windshield wipers when I turn off the ignition because they might freeze like that. It’s become such a habit, I do it even in warm weather.
My father knows how to be positive. Daddy loves people and loves to see them smile. If you ask him how he’s doing, you won’t hear “fine” or “OK.” You’re more likely to hear, “Finer than frog’s hair” or “If I were any better, I couldn’t hardly stand it” or maybe “If I were any better, there would be two or three of me!” He can tell a joke you’ve heard many times and still make it funny because he enjoys it so much. Daddy also knows his priorities. He has always put God first, then his family and others. His own wants come far down the list.
Daddy has been a wonderful example of a loving father, which made it easy for me to accept God as my heavenly Father.
We didn’t say “I love you” a lot when I was growing up, but I have never doubted I was loved and treasured by both my parents. Our family was in church every time the doors were open, and sometimes we even opened the doors. My parents are still very active in their church. They also visit the nursing home once or twice a week, and the residents look forward to their visits. Daddy shows his love by his actions; he’s always giving, serving, working to help others.
Yes, my Daddy knows a lot about a lot of things. Most of all today, I want him to know how very much I love him. Happy Father’s Day, Daddy.

Pam Robbins