World's Greatest Dad, eh? I'm sorry, Central Illinois, but I've got you all beat. My father, Dave Garcia, is the very definition of a model parent. This man is the rock in my life more often than not, even at the old age of 35. Growing up, he was the father most of us just read about in stories now. He made sure my mother, my brother and I didn't want for a thing, going to work at CAT every single day, coming home every single night and I can promise you, no one has ever or will ever make me feel as safe as my father has. He was the dad who coached soccer, who always had time for a game of Crazy Eights and Old Maid, who made sure we had grand vacations and never hesitated to participate in activities with me. He gave completely of himself as a father with zero hesitation, day in and day out. As a child, I had no idea what he was doing or how lucky I was to have such a dad. As a single parent, my life is wild and difficult most of the time. My dad has stepped into a role that should have been filled by my childrens father but was not. He is there for me 24/7 with advice, assistance (both financial and emotional) and is the constant in my life that aids me in staying afloat when I feel like giving up. He is not only generous with his time and money with me, but with the entire community. He has actively run in the St. Jude Memphis to Peoria run for probably 20 years (ask Lee Hall, he can tell you!) and is so dedicated to the entire St. Jude organization. What most see on just one day of the year (that being the telethon), I see year-round. He has had both knees replaced and yet still maintains strength to continue with this run each year, whether running or driving the grueling drive in the motor homes behind the runners. We can't go anywhere without him knowing someone there and he goes out of his way to make everyone he knows feel important and respected. In a world where fathers beat their babies to death, leave their mothers destitute and shirk even their basic primal parenting duties, my father shines out as a star to be not just wished upon but to be honored as the truly incredible man that he is. I love him more than words can ever describe and I can only hope that he will always know what a profound testament his life is to me. I love you Popper!
They Don't Make 'Em Like This Anymore
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