This I believe. I believe that it is good to have a roll model. My grandfather David “Mike” L is my roll model. My Grandpa Mike was my dad’s father, and he was a great man. He had gray hair and a white beard, and he was big in every way. He was tall and he weighed A LOT. I learned a lot about my grandpa after he died last fall. I always knew he was a generous man because he was so generous with my sister and me. He would always call before our birthdays or Christmas and ask our parents what big present he could get us, and he always gave us the coolest gifts. The funny thing is that he would get us these great presents, and then he would give my dad some tool that came free with some other tool he had bought for himself. My family would always laugh about that.
After he died, our family learned how giving he was to everyone he met. He loved to help people. In his office we found a picture and thank you hanging on the wall from some children he had his employees build a tree house for. He also helped families in need, gave money and construction services to his church, and the United Way in his county told us that their program would not have survived without all that he gave to them.
He had a dog-named Pepper who was his best friend. Pepper got his name because he was part Australian Shepard so he was black and white and he looked like pepper and salt. My Grandpa Mike and Pepper would sit in his chair every night and share a bowl of ice cream. It was quite a sight. Pepper also weighed A LOT.
My Grandpa was born in Texarkana, Texas 64 years ago, and he always talked like he was from Texas. I remember my grandfather using phrases like “down on it” which translated into where something was located. He also said, “and on like that” I think, without even realizing he was saying it. I remember one time we were visiting with my grandfather and he was talking about building “tires,” and my mom looked at him and said, “How do you build tires?” He looked at her like she was crazy and used hand gestures to show he meant “towers” and said, “You know, tires.” So now every time we see any kind of tower we say, “Look, a tire.” My grandfather will live forever in my heart and will always be my herod. And on like that….
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.