John and Lanie

They were my parents.  Dad passed in ’84, mom last year in ’07.  I do miss them both.  They were so instrumental in my life.  I am where I am today because of the loving but firm paternal method of my 7th grade educated dad.  Mom, was lovingly tenacious about things that she knew would matter in my life as I grew older.  They both taught me right from wrong.  Never lie to anyone. Mom always said, “Timothy, keep a good name.”  Dad wrote in one of my Bibles, “Obay the Lord,” love, dad.  That wasn’t a typo, dad wrote it that way.  He wasn’t a good speller.  However, Dad knew how to get his point across regardless if he could spell or not.

Yeah, I miss them. I used them in my life as my confidents and best friends.  They wanted me to succeed in life in every way possible.  Dad took me to my first day in college and left me. Mom cried for about a week after I left.  Dad was always excited for me when I accomplished things in college.  Mom said, I knew you could do it.  When I left college, I lived, what I feel was “too far” from them.  But, hey, they were happy that I was working in the second largest church for our denomination and that made up for it.  They loved me through that.

I had to make many decisions in life and mom and dad were there for me.  Dad always thought that going from one church job to another was sorta like a baseball contract.  “Son, always hold out for more.”  He thought it was like negotiating a contract.

Dad died of a brain tumor in “84. I saw him lose his mental capabilities as he faded.  One of those were his speech.  We really couldn’t understand Dad but he tried hard to say what he was thinking.  Two days before he passed, he was in the hospital talking to me.  I couldn’t understand what he was saying and I was trying to answer him as if I knew.  He knew that too, he wasn’t stupid.  And so after a question to me and I answered it wrongly he said to me, “Are you wacky?”  We laughed.  I left the hospital shortly thereafter and was called two days later about his passing.  So that was the last thing my dad said to me.  I loved him so much.

Mom, became my second best friend, next to my wife.  We talked everyday.  We talked about everything.  She became successfully independent.  She made a point to be able to live by herself with no one helping her.  She joined the McAdenville Women’s club, the senior citizens of McAdenville and Cramerton.  She traveled alot.  Mom even at the age of 85 got kicked out of the “Meals on Wheels” program because they saw her getting in her car to go get the mail.  That was so funny. Mom had a good life.  I took her out to eat one more time at Bojangles.  She liked their chicken and marinated slaw.  Two months later, she was gone.  She always asked about how Carolina Basketball was doing, even though she never kept up with it, she knew it meant something to me.  At the funeral I had to help preach it.  At the opener of my time to speak, I looked at the casket and said, “Mom, the last time I looked Carolina was winning by ten points.”  Everyone laughed at that.

I still have decisions and still go on in life without being able to talk to them. John and Lanie Whitworth; special people in my life.  But I’ve always kept a good name, never lied and tried to live right.  We didn’t always agree on everything, but I tried to always do the right thing, even when doing the right thing wasn’t popular.

Dad, Mom, I do miss you.  Life is good. 

Excuse me, let me get a Kleenex.  Special people for special times.

That’s what I think about it. (and they would have been proud of it)



3 responses to “John and Lanie

  1. This was a very personal, touching look behind the curtain of your life. How much I love you for sharing that side of you. I’m so sorry they’re gone because I know how much you love them still. The one thing I’m glad you can say is that you have no regrets. You showed them your love and they knew you loved them. No regrets. Few can say that.

  2. Pass the kleenex. My Mom died in 1964 and Dad in 1982. You have been blessed to have been that close to you parents. I can see their influence in you. That is why you love everyone you meet even in the voting line. (From a previous blog.)

    I have adopted your outlook for meeting new people and will talk to everyone that will let me. This is something I have picked up from Hospitality book. To be giving in hospitality and friendship really changes your life and the lives you touch—Yes even your family’s.

    God bless You and Your Family

    soaring eagle

  3. Your thoughts about your mom and dad really touched my heart. I preached at dad’s funeral. It was the hardest thing for me to do. Too much to tell about in this short response. I understand your feelings because they are my feelings too. I’ll write you a letter and send it to your address. I’d call and tell you about but I still can’t get past my tears. I hope you understand.
    With lots of love from Phyllis and me.

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