It's official--after 30 years my Dad's retired from the navy into civilian-land. What a moment! We celebrated his career with an afternoon ceremony at Fort Belvoir yesterday, and I must say that it was heart-warming to see all who came up to celebrate with us--My Uncle Keith and Jill even drove up all the way from Georgia! And with the glorified parking lot of Interstate 95, that's no small sacrifice.
I'm always amazed to hear about Dad's work, about the missions he's led and the responsibilities he's had. He doesn't talk about it much at home (with us kids, that is), for when he's home he's home and interested in the goings on here. But I appreciate these moments when I do get to hear a bit of what he's faced and conquered at sea or on shore from those who aren't constrained by modesty to reveal it. The constant refrain during the service and after was that he is a "fine man, principled, hard-working, committed, learned, and responsible, an able leader and mentor." Their casually slipped references and anecdotes hint at what he's accomplished in a way that inspires awe in me--he makes me proud to be his daughter!