Eulogy for my father

Here are the notes/outline for the eulogy I gave for my father, Howard McEwen, Sr., June 25, 1946 – July 25, 2018

The day my dad died, I drove up and got to his empty house. The police and paramedics had left. Tara and Steve were out handling things elsewhere.

I sat in his brown leather chair, HIS chair. Things were quiet, except for one thing. Ticks and tocks. Ticks and tocks. I then noticed something I’d never noticed before. From that chair, I could see 9 clocks. HE could see nine clocks. Every night he was face-to-face with nine clocks. Three of which he had made.

He did tend to do things in extremes.

Whether consciously or not, I think this showed how important time was to him.

Ten years ago, he made a major step and took more control of his time. And his life. He did more woodworking, he visited Marge and Don more, he spent vacations with Bob and Betty – the highlight of his year. He cooked and he read, and read and read those mystery novels – I found a list of 1,000 of them he had read. He was no longer delaying things he wanted to do.

He told Tara the biggest downside of his sickness was that he was finally feeling happy. He was taking the time for himself and, in the process, giving himself to others. He spent his time well, how he wanted to spend it. Until his time ran out.

So the lesson to me, and maybe us, is that remember each moment, be in each moment. The past is past and the future – good or bad – is coming whether we like it or not. Be in the here and now because it’s all we have and life is slipping away with every tick and every tock. And I’m going to go home and put a few more clocks in the my own house.

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