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Sunday, June 19, 2016

Father's Day 2016

(For politics, please scroll down)

Today would have been Dad's 105th birthday.

Dad in his early 20's.  He remained a confirmed bachelor until age 39.  Then Mom snagged him!

I miss you, Dad.

Dad was a gentleman — never mind that his calling was being a farmer and running a sawmill. Those vocations didn't earn a good living during the Great Depression, however, so Dad made his living as a master mechanic (automotive and mass transit).

Dad stood up whenever a woman entered the room — and that display of chivalry on December 24, 1949, is what first attracted my mom to him. She worked downtown and was tired of men slamming the door in her face and pushing her aside at bus stops, streetcar stops, etc.

Also, Dad never used bad language in front of a woman. I heard him swear only twice: (1) the day that he moved from his home of some 70 years and (2) the one time he missed his dose of medication for anxiety attacks.


  1. Not growing up with a Father, has made me even more aware, to be a good Father to my two daughters. Unfortunately, that often means being away from them. As long as the internet cooperates, I'll hopefully be able to Skype with them tonight.

    - CI

    1. CI,
      Good for you! I hope that your daughters appreciate you.

  2. Your dad was handsome. Please wish a Happy Father's Day to Mr. AOW for me. Have a great day.

    1. Dad really kept his good looks all his life. Amazing! And people commented on how young he looked at his funeral. I hope that I am that lucky.

  3. Replies
    1. No matter what, time marches inexorably on. **sigh"**

  4. _________ A Father’s Prayer _________

    Ask not, my child, what I can do for you.
    Forgive what seems like stinginess today.
    A lot will be required to go through
    The process of discovering the right way.

    Help yourself. Don't wait for me, my child.
    Each one of us must learn to stand alone.
    Rich rewards like Love can't be beguiled,
    Seduced or bought. They must in toil be grown.

    Perhaps to you I sound a bit too stern?
    Remember that I've lived a longer time.
    A joy cannot exist until you earn
    Your way. To do it FOR you'd be a crime.

    Exacting though I seem, my little one,
    Respect me now, and –– later –– you'll have fun.

    ~ FreeThinke - The Sandpiper

  5. You once told me your father looked like Humphrey Bogart. Well, I can see a resemblance, but your father was better looking.

    1. FT,
      Dad was good looking until the day that he died at the age of 86.5.

      In fact, while in his 80's, IHOP was carding him to see if he was actually eligible for a senior discount (at least age 50). LOL!

    2. People say that I look more like Dad than like Mom.

      I'm not sure about that -- although I will admit that I look more like Dad's mother's family and Mom's mother's family than like Dad's father's family and Mom's father's family.

      Strange how genetics will work! A mystery.

  6. Just added to the body of the blog post...

    Dad was a gentleman. He stood up whenever a woman entered the room — and that's what first attracted my mom. She worked downtown and was tired of men slamming the door in her face and pushing her aside at bus stops, streetcar stops, etc. Also, Dad never used bad language in front of a woman. I heard him swear only twice: (1) the day that he moved from his home of some 70 years and (2) the one time he missed his dose of medication for anxiety attacks.

  7. I love a man with good manners. Your dad was very handsome!

  8. Your dad lives on in you.
    He did a good job.

    1. Ed,
      You made me almost cry with that comment.



    Police: Parents admit 'gifting' teen to Bucks man; all 3 arrested

    Updated: JUNE 17, 2016 — 11:15 PM EDT

    by Robert Moran, Justine McDaniel, and Michaelle Bond

    A 51-year-old Bucks County man was arrested after he was found living with 12 girls, including a teenager he considered his wife, and a baby and a toddler he fathered with her, authorities said Friday.

    Lee Kaplan was arrested Thursday morning at his home on the 400 block of Old Street Road in Lower Southampton after an anonymous tip led county child welfare workers and police to his door, Lower Southampton police Lt. John Krimmel said.

    Some of the children were hiding in the small house.

    "We kept finding more children," Krimmel said. "It's just a crazy situation."

    The oldest girl, now 18, told police she was the mother of two of the girls, a 3-year-old and a 6-month-old, Krimmel said.

    The teen's parents, Daniel and Savilla Stoltzfus, of Quarryville, Lancaster County, also were arrested after they told police they had "gifted" their daughter to Kaplan four years ago.

    The girl was 14 at the time, and Daniel Stoltzfus gave her to Kaplan as thanks "for helping his family out of financial ruin," according to the criminal complaints.

    The Stoltzfuses said they were the parents of all of the children except the two youngest, who were their grandchildren, Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler said. Officials on Friday still were trying to determine how the other nine children came to be living with Kaplan, and whether he had abused any of them.

    "We've got a ways to go to figure out what's really going on here," Heckler said.

    Heckler described the Stoltzfuses as "straightforward."




    They told police they were going to lose their farm until Kaplan "comes along and gives them money somehow," possibly employing Daniel Stoltzfus in a scrap business.

    Once their farm was saved, Daniel Stoltzfus, now 43, did some internet research and concluded that it was legal to give their daughter to Kaplan, Heckler said.

    Savilla Stoltzfus, 42, was at Kaplan's house when the child-welfare check was made, Heckler said.

    The Stoltzfuses "think he's a wonderful man," Heckler said.

    Some of the girls also said good things about Kaplan, Heckler said, describing them as "brainwashed" by Kaplan.

    Kaplan and the 18-year-old were not married, but Heckler said they acted as husband and wife.

    The girls apparently did not attend school and it was unclear if they had ever been to a doctor, Heckler said. They did not appear to be in bad health and did not show visible signs of trauma, he said.

    Because of an apparent Amish influence on the children, police asked child-welfare workers from Lancaster County who are familiar with Amish culture to interview the children, Krimmel said.

    Police were unable to find birth certificates for any of the children and said they did not have Social Security numbers.

    Heckler said all of the children are in protective custody and are together.

    Kaplan and the Stoltzfuses each are being held on $1 million bail.

    Kaplan was charged with two counts of statutory sexual assault and related offenses. Daniel Stoltzfus was charged with criminal conspiracy and endangering the welfare of children. Savilla Stoltzfus was charged with endangering the welfare of children.

    The Stoltzfuses were born into the Amish religion, but renounced it amid a years-long fight with community elders, according to a federal lawsuit they filed in 2009 against their former church.

    In the 2009 complaint, the Stoltzfuses said they had 11 children and had owned their property on Pumping Station Road in Kirkwood, Lancaster County, since 1997. They operated a metalworking business on the property. The Stoltzfuses suggested that sect leaders, among other things, frowned on them for doing business "with an individual of the Jewish faith named Lee Kaplan," the complaint says.

    The lawsuit was dismissed later that year.

    Neighbors on Friday said the arrests brought unprecedented activity to an otherwise quiet neighborhood, with news helicopters overhead and media vans swarming the streets.

    Kaplan's empty house, with a bright-blue door and at least one window boarded up, was guarded by police Friday night.

    Jen Betz, 37, a mother of two young children, said she was the neighbor who called a child-welfare hotline about Kaplan. She said she called Bucks County Children and Youth on Wednesday because she was concerned about the girls - some 7 or 8, some young teens - she saw at his house, which she noticed had boarded windows and high weeds.

    They all wore blue dresses and had long, unkempt hair, she said.

    "The guy drives that creepy blue van," she said. "He looked creepy."

    Then Betz learned that there was an infant in the house. Being a new mother to a little girl helped make the decision for her.

    "Something needed to be done," she said.

    Betz talked to a woman from the Bucks agency on the phone Wednesday. "She asked, 'Do I need to send the police?' I said absolutely," Betz said.


    1. What to say to that story, FT?

      The world has gone mad, and the earth has slipped from its axle.

  11. What a lovely remembrance to have of your father. Mr. B's mother said the same thing. She took notice when Mr. B's father stood when she entered the room. He would be about 1 year younger than your dad - so same era. We perceive we've fallen so low in manners today, that I'm surprised at your comment on "men slamming the door in her face and pushing her aside at bus stops." I imagined better treatment.

    1. Baysider,
      Mom said that government workers in D.C. were among the rudest people in the world -- as far back as 1934, when Mom came here in search of employment. She hailed from the Knoxville, Tennessee area.

  12. My husband has gentlemanly manners too, and a kindly heart. He helps me feel safe in this crazy world. Your father was quite handsome. Happy Father's Day to all your dad's out there. May the LORD bless and keep you. ~:)

    1. Sparky,
      Mr. AOW is chivalric, too. I know that my parents were relieved when I chose him over the other fellow who was in the running. That other fellow was " in rebellion" and unbelievably rude to anyone over the age of 30.

  13. so beautiful AOW! Happy Fathers DAY to your hubby and loved ones hon!! xoxox:)

  14. Never had a true father. My bio-father was damaged, nice-lookin guy who couldn't hold a job and considered that everybody to be else's fault. Liked to steal stuff and try to get my mother to fence it for him. She put his ass in jail. Met him when I was 18 years old, at his father's funeral. First thing he said to me in my life was, "Don't you think you're too young to be smoking?" Next he introduced me to his 3rd wife, an ex-stripper.

    My maternal grandparents raised me 'til I was 12. Already raised 8 kids, thru the Depression, so they pretty much had the concept distilled down to neat tricks and homespun aphorisms. Ate well, learned well, did chores well, and had a typical mid-American life 'til Mother decided I needed a father and married a drunk. Not an alcoholic, just a drunk. Nice enough guy, but a drunk.

    So I decided the best thing I could ever do for my kids was to give 'em a good house, good food, a good role model, and treat their mother with love and respect and dignity. So far none of 'em are in jail, drug addicts, or dead, and they're all in their 50s with kids of their own who're doin O.K. One already has his MA in computer science from Florida State. Two others are in college and succeeding nicely.

    Gotta play the cards you're dealt, and I got a yarbrough where fathers were concerned. Got a nice pair of 10s, though, for grandparents to raise me and an ace of diamonds for a wife. Life's funny that way sometimes, ain't it.


    1. BoCoPro,
      We can't choose our parents. But your story illustrates that we CAN choose our own path in life -- and what kind of parents WE can be.

  15. AOW. NICE ! He had some great kids too.

    1. One child. He proclaimed, "One if the most of plenty."

      Dad was almost 41 when I was born.

      My parents met when Mom was 34 and Dad was 39. They met on Christmas Eve 1949 and married in May 1950.

    2. Um...IS the most of plenty.

      Damn iPad.

  16. My dad would be 99 today. I was a difficult kid but he lived long enough to see me get back on track.

    Best to Mr. AOW and you. Hope you are feeling better or will soon. - Jason

    1. Jason,
      Few children are not difficult kids. At least, in some way.

  17. My Dad would be 90 this year!
    And, by the way, your Dad is so handsome no wonder he stayed single :-)


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