All-Star Dad

Way back in April I was absolutely delighted to find out that I had been chosen to receive the 2010 First Annual All Star DadsFather-Daughter Award” by the Detroit Fathers and Families Coalition . I was nominated by Jacki Hayes from our church, who had already spoken to and interviewed my kids without me knowing.

At the banquet, we were treated to some fine keynote speeches about fatherhood, especially in relation to our daughters. We heard some very moving stories from a father growing up in Detroit, who himself passed on some valuable lessons he learned as a child from his neighborhood father figure, and his relationship to his own teen age daughter today. There was some funny things, and some serious things that made Pete and I automatically look at each other and mouth “right on, brother!”. It was an honor to be there, and a pleasure to listen. After the keynote, we were treated to a small speech from each of the daughters about their own dads before receiving the trophy. Here’s the Father Daughter dance that followed, showing my compadre, Pete Gregory and one of his daughters. Behind him is me, with Arianna dancing on my feet.

A total of three dads were awarded from our church. The other one was Blane Hansknecht. Here is a picture of the three of us, and our daughters and plaques.

We were in some high company that night, including members of Detroit City Council, Wayne County Sheriff, and one Manny Ramirez, member of the Detroit Lions offensive line. I learned that he is from Houston, TX, and attended Texas Tech. I went up to him to introduce myself as a fellow Hispanic from his home state, and lightly pounded his shoulder as a friendly gesture. I nearly broke my hand; it was like punching lightly padded concrete! He was very gracious and lived up to his billing as a gentle giant, and kindly agreed to a picture with me. Here’s the two of us(I’m the short one on the left).