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I had the best father who ever lived. He was not a rich or powerful or famous man. I was the third girl, after he had desperately wanted a son. Everybody always thought he was my grandfather—it was the '60s and he was 40 when I was born.

My father taught me the value of unconditional love. Every morning, he greeted me with, "Good morning, Sunshine." His eyes lit up every time I came into his line of vision. My father taught me the value of education. He was valedictorian, but didn't get to go to college. College was always a given for my sisters and me.

My father told me that I was so valuable. He spent all kinds of time with me. My favorite times were on Saturday mornings when he had to go into his office at the railroad. I would sit outside his office, in front of the newsstand. I would get to read as many comic books as I could before he finished and he would pay for whichever one I was holding when he finished. When I went off to college, he wrote me a letter every week. I still have those letters. When my father died at age 69, I was devastated. I can still hear his voice. I am the woman I am because of my father. I know he would be proud.

Barb, Herkimer, New York
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