My American Dad

burns the fire

My father died. In my mother’s arms. In front of me.

He coughed blood and the aneurysm on his infected aorta ruptured. His eyes rolled in his head and his body convulsed. I screamed GET A DOCTOR! and they came running, but my Mom’s best friend of 54 years, my Dad, was already gone.

Mom and Dad Wedding

My mother and I reached for each other, hearts clanging, wildly alive. You are amazing. We washed his blood off her fingers. My husband and I embraced, crying love.


When my father was sick and the doctors and nurses searched his tired body for clues, it hit me that they had no idea who they were trying to save. That he was a world-class professor and friend, that his parents were deaf, he hailed from Chicago, aced Harvard and gave the best hugs.

Harvard Graduation

After he died, I told everyone, he was a great Dad, and…

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