james francis davis

generous, compassionate, selfish, sick, couragous

My father was a WW 11 veteran who fought under general Patton. He returned from war an emotional and mental cripple who very quickly had eight children with my mother. Dad could never adjust to what life demanded of him. He drank and gambled every day of his existence after returning from war. I watched his progression as a young boy and witnessed far too much for a kid to endure without years down the road following his footsteps into my own heroin addiction and alcoholism. I am 42 years sober writing this. My dads progression was horrible. He eventually wound up addicted to prescribed medications, which, at age 49, he committed suicide. He never drew a sober breath and lost out on many things, especially his family. He rendered us poor and homeless for many years and was violent. I didn't know then what I know and understand now about the disease and its destruction. I was 16 when he died and hated myself for hating him. These are the dynamics of the disease as we now know. I'm a father of three children now and a grandfather and know much more about addiction then most men my age. What's strange about this is I've never had an opportunity to honor my dad for the things he did pass down to me. I've never publicly said thank you for fighting a war that saved not only lives but preserved civilization and freedom that I and my children live with now. My father was a smart warm loving man when at his senses. I know he suffered tremendously and wished he could have changed his world, but as Bill Wilson said, "No human power could relieve his malady!" My dad was powerless and never had a chance back then. So today, dad, just a couple of weeks after what would have been your 99th birthday, I say thank you, and I wish I could get just a couple of hours to pick that wonderful mind you never really had a chance to expand. I wish my kids could have met you also. And, lastly I want to say that despite many wrongs you did something right enough to instill in me that I wanted to be sober and healthy. You were my reason to even consider such a thing. Thank you dad. Thank you from the bottom of my sober addicts heart.

your boy,

rich Davis

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