Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My sister Sandy's Tribute to our Grandfather

Papa’s legacy

My grandfather (Frank Senicar) was an amazing man. He was the patriarch of our family
I can’t speak to what life was like to be Frank’s child but I can speak to life as Frank’s grandchild and great grandchildren and great great grandchildren.

Family was the most important thing to him. He was always smiling, he was content with life. He accepted everyone for who they were, expectations were never beyond what each individual could attain. I can’t remember ever hearing him raise his voice at me,

My family had the luxury of growing up in the same town as our grandparents. This made for a different experience I believe. We would stop by and Papa would get home from work at the Cooperage, dressed in his work clothes, have a beer sit on the patio in the back. You were always greeted with a big hug and expected to sit on his lap and let him know what was new …did you have a boyfriend to which our response was usually Papa! After he retired he would pick us up in strawberry season and we would go strawberry picking together, an adventure that now I cherish but at the time wow did I wish he had better things to do because I hated strawberry picking. Through grades 6-8 my sisters’ and I would come for lunch at Nanny and Papa’s much to their delight, we would have cheese dreams, beet soup, waffles and ice cream & home made doughnuts. Often Papa was not there these days as he was driving for the cancer society, this got him out of the house and he was doing something to help others. We can only imagine the peace and tranquility he experienced each of these days on his trips to Hamilton. For those who knew my grandmother you can appreciate that Papa was the seen not heard person in the relationship and boy could she talk!!! Obviously this was the dominant trait to be passed on as there are only a few quiet soles within this family. He adored Nanny beyond what most relationships these days could even hope to attain. their love was special.

I was never embarrassed of my grandparents, I loved when they would stop by when I was working at Canadian Tire through high school and college they just wanted to know that I was well and they were so proud of me for pursuing my dream of being a nurse. For a couple that worked hard their entire lives all they wanted for their grandchildren was for us to live a good life and be happy.

Now for the legacy that Papa has left through the eyes of his great grandchildren:

· The man never had a job… he has been retired since I was 10yr old. They cannot understand his work experience in the tobacco fields or years in the Cooperage although for anyone that looked at his fingers ouch that might give them a clue.
· Wow what a memory… he knew every member of our family and what was important to them …somedays I can’t remember the names of my own children.
· Eat what you like and love….. years of table cream in his coffee, Nanny’s baking. We have grown up watching our fat intake and caloric intake…. maybe it is us that are doing it wrong.
· Driving into his mid 90’s
· Living in his own home until his stroke

We can only hope that Papa’s resiliency, compassion, strength and love are passed onto our children, because out of his 4 children,11 grandchildren, 25 great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren probability tells us that many of us will not come close to attaining this legacy.

1 comment:

Laurie Knight said...

Well Sherry, I am crying. I would have loved to have known your Papa like you all did.

Thank you, from my heart, for sharing your sisters memorial with all of us.

Luv n hugs