As many of my readers know, May 28th has been a poignant day for me for 18 years now. It was on this day in 1990 that my father lost his 11-year fight against cancer. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss him, but not a day goes by either that I’m not thankful for the time we had together.
He was a remarkable man, born in Lucera, Italy during WWII to my Arabic grandfather and Nonna italiana. He then grew up with four wonderful sisters in a modest little house in Hot Springs, Arkansas–just a few doors down from Bill Clinton, incidentally. I don’t think his parents ever really understood his ambition as he established a promising career in optical physics and moved around the country, but they loved him and supported him all the way until the end.
In the wake of Dad’s death, I discovered exactly how blessed I was. I have a strong, wonderful mother who was more than up to the challenge of playing the roles of both of my parents. I have an extended family who has always been and will always be there for me. And I have devoted friends who accept me unconditionally. Through no fault of my own, I have more than anyone could ask for and for that I am extremely grateful.
So on a day that I always devote to pensiveness and reflection, here’s to you, Dr. Guido Hassin. I miss you. We all miss you. But we’re all better off for having known you.