December 20 2003
EULOGY FOR MR. BEYER. DAD.
By Patricia Lee
When I look out at all of you I see an ocean of memories. A lot of those include me.
My email, from some of you over the last week, tell me of a huge other world of memories.
The common thread, is of course Dad, …Hubert, Hube, THE Hube, Opa, Mr. Beyer.
It’s a lot of titles.
Seeing you all here reminds us of what a full life he really had in earning them.
We all already know … Dad was
- He had humor, grace and pride.
These were all things he exuded. They were unmistakable characteristics.
Instead I thought I’d relate a few tiny moments that tell you very big things..
My Brother Charles, at age 11 or 12, asked for permission to get a job. A paper route. It was a most welcome first venture into the working world, so my Dad thought.
”You can do that Charles, but remember, 4:00am is early. That’s when you have to get up to deliver the papers” is what he said.
Yep. There was Dad, 4:00 am, firing up the car.. delivering papers with Charles. He was happy to do it. Happier than Charles I think. It would have been so easy to quit. Instead he helped.
Then there’s the baseball games. Gary reminded me that Dad used to watch him play baseball. He would go to these games completely naive to the rules. Invariably a patient parent would explain them, but he never really got it. Yet he showed up every time, and somehow knew when HIS kid was doing well. He knew when to jump up and cheer. And he did.
I saw a tear in my Dad’s eye when Roderick received a standing ovation for his role as Winnie the Pooh in a Grade 7 play. There is nothing spectacular about Winnie the Pooh. Yet this particular piece, to him, was so moving. More powerful than Broadways finest.
What can I say. This is a man who wanted to buy me a pony for the backyard. He befriended the kittens and puppies that “followed me home” He admired me, yet I learned it all from him. We had the quintessential Father Daughter relationship.
These are just cute snapshots from the past. But combined, and padded with a lifetime of similar parenting, the snapshots become conduits from which we learned,
- And so on
These are the things he taught by example, as well as pen. What a Father.
This is all way too soon. It’s so easy to feel ripped off.
I said to a friend last week, I brought life into this world and it didn’t hurt nearly as much as being a part of the process that ushered it forward.
For giving life, I got to see this beautiful child turn into the young man I’m so proud of. Yet in observing life’s passing, it felt as if there were no reward.
But then I thought.
- I thought about Dad firing up the car at 4:am to drive Chuck on his paper route.
- I thought about Dad watching Gary play ball, even though he didn’t know the rules
- I thought about the incredible amount of pride he took in Rod’s ability to act, and sing
- I thought about the Pony.
The truth is Dad never felt ripped off by anything, and he faced this kind of adversity.. and more.. far more than I have. Hurt, yes. Ripped off, no. He’s still teaching me. Right now.
There is so much to it.. more than this last 10 days we have endured. It’s true, this is harder for us to see now, but the reward is there. Oh yes, I sure do wish he was here.
But the reward is, and always has been, a lifetime of being with and learning from the best.
Without the endurance of these last 10 days I would not have had that lifetime.
So as my Brother Gary said, this will be our year of firsts. It starts with our first Christmas without our Father, …Hubert, Opa, or Mr. Beyer.
It will be hard because its no secret.. he was ALL ABOUT Christmas.
But from there, I think we’re up to the challenge of creating firsts that our Dad, Grandfather to these lovely children, Husband to Eleonore, would be proud of.
Dad is my hero.