Dad’s Amazing Qualities

Dad during WWIIThinking about my Dad this morning and remembering some of his amazing qualities. Here’s one I want to share.

As a kid Mom & Dad took the family to an orphanage in Mexico for a weekend. We were part of a food-drive project spearheaded by our church, St. Cecilia.  Because we had a VW van, our family would help deliver the food.

Dad was a civil engineer who loved to build, and Mom was a nurse.  That weekend, together they applied their skills; Dad would make repairs to the building while Mom would care for the sick.

I was around eight years old, and Dad told us that while we were there we’d live with the orphans. Their despair still comes to mind … that along with how I took simple things for granted – a private bathroom and soft toilet paper — for the bathroom was behind a rock, and we used toilet paper that felt like sandpaper.

On the way home, Mom and Dad took us to dinner at a restaurant, a rare treat.  I distinctly remember Dad saying, “Now you’ve experienced two different live styles. It’s up to you to choose the one to live by.”

For years I took that to mean choose Rich vs. Poor, but with reflection, I realize he meant Giving vs. Taking.  Thanks Dad for being a wonderful leader.  Your influence helped fuel my passion for Corporate Social Responsibility.