My parents are in town so today I spent some time chatting with my Dad for the Armchair Genealogist‘s writing challenge. We talked about his character and values and if they have changed since he was in his 20’s. It was a time of transition for him, I think. He was gaining confidence after being away from a negative home life for several years. He had completed his GED a couple of years before but had failed a test of some kind for a college freshman equivalency. Not sure I understand that. I learned that he and the two other single instructors at the school lived in the barracks with students but in a different area. They felt like brothers to him. His only brother died when he was a year old. These men where older than my Dad and I think they might have been mentors but they certainly where more than just co-workers. One of them died a couple of years later in a drowning accident. He is still bothered by the explanation of what happened to him.
I mentioned to him about the running story I shared yesterday and he remembered a different one where a civilian who was watching my Dad run laps around a block or something decided that he must be tired so he started running with him thinking he would be able to beat him. But he didn’t. My Dad stayed a head of him the whole time. I’m thinking that maybe my competitive side was inherited from my Dad. I didn’t know this about him.
My short-term goal is to start working on a story and try to get a handle on they style of writing that will work for me and for this project. My Dad remembered that a student shared a story in the Underwater Swimmers School newsletter a few years ago about my Dad. He is going to find that. With a short story in good shape we will send it to the UWSS newsletter along with a request for students and instructors memories of my Dad. I don’t think he has a very good understanding of how others viewed him. A few stories could really help me to have a better understanding of his character.