In the 1950s, my dad had three small children and a marriage that was headed for divorce. He did something which is common today, but not then. He convinced a judge he could take better care of us than our mother could. All my aunts and uncles had a small part in raising my two brothers and me with lots of love. When I was 7, we moved to small town in South Dakota. When Dad saw the little town, he said that if he had the money, he would have turned around and headed back home. But Dad was not the type to turn around and quit. We stuck it out and had many happy years in that small town.
He also made our family a unit. He didn't go fishing with his buddies; he took his three children fishing. He took his sons hunting when they were old enough. We had many good times in those growing-up years, and he wasn't afraid to talk to us about growing up. When I asked him a "woman question" he sat with me, answered everything I asked and explained the facts of life. I've talked to girlfriends who didn't even have that discussion with their mother.
Through the years, Dad had lady friends, but he never married them, explaining years later that his women friends would never treat us as well as they treated their own kids, and that was why he would never get married.
Dr. Laura. I loved my Dad. This was part of the eulogy I read at his funeral forty-five years ago. I still pay tribute to him every Father's Day.