My Daddy, Paul Leo!! My dad was born in 1910 to an Irish Catholic father and a French Canadian mother. There were eleven children in the family. But only 6 lived to adulthood. This picture was taken 1828. My dad is the young man on the left. His parents are in the middle, three of his sisters in the middle and younger brother on the right. This is the earliest picture I have of him.
My dad worked in a shoe factory back East when I was little. He was married before he meet my mom. That marriage ended in a bitter divorce. My dad had five children from that marriage. I never, ever heard him talk about those kids. I have never met them. I often wonder about those half siblings!! I wonder how hard it would be to walk away from your children, never to see them again on this earth!! My Daddy and me.
When I was six my family moved out West, I think it was mainly to get away from his other family. My Dad had an Irish temper and was an alcoholic. But, he never ever abused me. The last few years of his life he stopped drinking and helped others end their habit through the Alcoholics Anonymous. I'm proud of him for that.
My Dad was a very honest person. I remember one Christmas Eve, we had returned home from shopping and my Dad realized the clerk had given him $20 dollars extra in change. He took us right back to that store and returned the money to a very thankful clerk. I'm so glad that my father taught me to be honest by his example!!
Another memory is shopping for shoes. YIKES!! I hated shoe shopping with my Dad. He had a great knowledge of how a good shoe was made and suppose to fit. They didn't have the self serve shoe stores in those days that they do know. Heaven forbid, we go into a shoe store where the shoes were poorly made or the clerk didn't now to fit it properly. They would definitely hear a word to two from my Dad. My brothers and I would just cringe and want to hide!! He just wanted the best made product and that's not a bad thing.
This is the picture on my Dad's last drivers license. I like his smiling Irish eyes!!
For most of my life my dad lived with heart disease. I remember visiting with my family many times and thinking it might be the last time I saw him. But he surprised me so many times!! He died at the young age of 70 after suffering his fourth heart attack. It's been over 27 years ago and I still miss him. Even though I know he wasn't perfect (I'm not either), I knew he loved me and I loved him!! I look forward seeing him again. We had a great time when we did his temple work. My Dad and all his siblings have been sealed to my grandparents. I look forward to being sealed to my Dad one day too. I love you, Dad.