Today was a somewhat disappointing day for me personally. I know it isn’t a big deal, but I was hoping for some good news regarding a job I applied for, but it didn’t come. So I did what all strong women do. I felt overwhelmed and then I pulled up my pants and got on with it. Something I learned from both my parents. And that got me to thinking about Dad.  So I decided to share my memories of my Dad. I wrote this and shared it at his funeral service. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done and it made me realize that today, while disappointing is not hard, it’s just life.

“Robert is a name borne by Kings and Dukes that means bright and shining. Dean is a name from the old English meaning “denu” or valley. Robert Dean Morris was a bright, shiny part of our lives, he was a husband, a father, a brother, an uncle and a stepdad but to my brother and sisters he was simply Dad.

Dad was a simple man. a quiet constant in our lives, always ready with a sandwich, a hug and a laugh. His legacy is multifaceted and simple, like him.

Trivia Dad stored a wealth of trivia in  his head. A gift or a curse depending if you are on the receiving end of the trivia..but a trait that my brother and sisters carry with us (some more than others). When ever I couldn’t remember a bit of minutia, Kelly would say Ask Dad. Need directions – ask Dad.

We had a lot of simple fun, I remember being a small child and driving around in my dad’s blue and white Le Mans and looking for pop bottles. The glass ones, and when it was spotted our job was to shout out “pop bottle” the car would come to a stop and we would jump out and retrieve them and thrown them in the trunk. Dad enjoyed it as much as us and we earned spending money for the Irish Inn.

Dad was the king of simple pleasures, when he first went tot he rehab unit he had a lot of trouble eating, no appetite he swore, but every time a Whitey’s shake appeared so did a miracle. His appetite came back and he ate every mouthful. Dad was a feeder, he grew up during the war and they ate every bite. You can guarantee that if you stopped over it would only be a few moments until Dad had offered you something to eat. He loved baseball, a hot dog and the occasional beer, a nice breakfast and popcorn and Disney on a Sunday night. Not that microwave stuff but homemade on the stove, i still make it that way to this day. Dad loved popcorn and I can still see him and his unusual eating style. he would scoop up the “corn” and shake it around in his hand until all the kernels were seated and then funnel it all in at once very quickly and chew.

Dad had names for all the kids in the neighborhood, Shyanna and Darrell, Pails and Buckets and of course he shortened our names as well. We became Kel, Heath, Laur and Ste. Still a point of humor to this day.

Dad saw a bit of the world, England, Europe and Hawaii, he loved it all. I was never more proud than the day that Dad boarded a plane for home. He had not been on a plane since the war easily got ont he plane to fly hone for his brothers funeral. Family first. As he exited the plane we all waited anxiously. His first words off the plane “that was beautiful”

Dad had the greatest heart, He loved big and without abandon.  He was always full of joy and he rejoiced in your victories, the biggest supporter.

Dad was a cheerleader in every sense of the word. He was also a survivor, he lived through the was, the depression, pancreatitis, surgery, massive stroke and still he hung on. In the end cancer didn’t even beat him, he decided to rest. Cancer would not steal his spirit, his humor or his intelligence.

During these last few months I enjoyed spending time with Dad, sometimes frustrating, sometime sad, but always enjoyable. He never stopped thinking about the future or making plans.Whether he was celebrating a Cubs win or cursing a Bears loss, Dad was always in the present.

We should celebrate his life, not what we have lost. He had a long good life, he was healthy for the best part of his life, he had married, had children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, happiness and very little sorrow. He was a rich man.

There is a line in the movie Braveheart spoken by Robert the Bruce that says “They fought like warrior poets, they fought like Scotsmen” As did our Robert Dean and true to his name he now rests in the valley of peace.

I love you Dad.”

Until Next Time,