A Simple Man, Simply A Hero!!
When I was a child, my parents use to love to go to Horn and Hardart in NYC. One of my most vivid memories I have is sitting at a table with my family, watching an old women go table to table picking up scraps of food. As she was waiting for this well dressed man to finish his meal. I will never forget what happened next. He lit up a cigarette, took a few hits then he crumbled his cigarette all over his leftovers. I will never forget the moment my dad (my hero) got up, walked over to the women and said “Mama have a seat, what would you like to eat?“.
My dad then waited on her!! I will never forgot that moment as their eyes met, as clearly she was homeless and hungry. As the well dressed man left his table he looked back at my dad with such disgusted in his eyes. I will never forget …..my dad saying “ This lady, is a human being. Just because she looks the way she does, she has a life….. she was once someone’s child and maybe even someone’s wife“.
He then proceeded to teach us children first hand of the Great Depression. As he lived through it first hand. Of how in a moment a man can loose everything, in a blink of an eye. As the well dress man stood in the distance and once again my dad caught site of him.
My dad said “What’s here today can be gone tomorrow”. As he looked at his children and smiled. “As that man ate alone, I’m richer then he is. I’m surround by love and my family. Money can’t buy compassion, nor a ticket into Heaven“. My dad preceded to say, “What type of man would purposely destroy his leftovers that a person was clearly waiting to eat?“.
My dad was an amazing man, he was rich in love, compassion, a man of real integrity. He taught his children first hand about the world around us. Even if we didn’t realize at the time, he used each opportunity he had to teach us about life!!
I moved back many years ago to New York to take care of my dad, as he got older. So my kids too, could hear the stories first hand of what I heard growing up. From a man who was one of the most amazing story tellers in life.
My dad, my rock, my hero!!!
Written by Barbara