Happy Father's Day

    From Shawn McCoy, incoming CEO, Deaconess Health System, Current Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer

    My dad is a humble man, with a truly amazing life story of struggle and perseverance. He does not show that struggle in any of his interactions as he is one of the nicest and kindest people you will ever meet. Like many other fathers, I did not truly appreciate my dad until I became a dad myself.

    Every night at midnight for 30 years, my dad began his shift at Alcoa. I could often hear him coming home at 8am in the morning, and I wondered how anyone could sleep during the day. I honestly cannot ever remember him missing a day of work, except once when he was sidelined with a kidney stone that put him in the hospital. Now that is a work ethic! He and my mom provided everything we needed on a very tight budget, both making sacrifices so their children could have more opportunities than they had. 

    My dad did not rest on the weekends. He was a ‘project’ guy. I was always curious to see what project he was working on. He is very mechanically inclined and would always do whatever needed done himself. Car maintenance, plumbing, landscaping, gardening, and overall general repair—I don’t 
    remember him ever hiring anyone to do anything. What I remember most is working on cars, motorcycles and bikes with him. He was always very patient, and usually let me do the work. I can only imagine how much additional time it took to have a curious, fumbling young boy involved, but he never seemed rushed or in a hurry. My dad always encouraged me and made me feel that I could do anything I wanted. That is the power of spending time and having patience with your children.

    Riding motorcycles off road was a passion of ours. When I was only 6, my dad got me my first motorcycle, which I still own and cherish today. I vividly remember him spending his day off hauling my older brother, myself and those motorcycles to Lynnville, Chandler or Elberfeld to ride in the woods. Now I am sure that it was not fun for him to follow a wobbly 6-year old around on a motorcycle on dusty, hot backwoods trails, but he did. Instead of lying in a hammock on the weekends, which he deserved, he sacrificed that time to see that we had fun and learned a skill. And in doing that, he showed me what it took to be a good dad. 

    I am a father now, and my appreciation of those great times together has grown. Guess what I found out? Being a dad is a hard job! Fortunately, my dad provided me a lot of life experiences and showed me the value of hard work, patience and kindness. Like the map that showed us the backroads to motorcycle riding heaven, my dad provided me with a solid roadmap for the day when I became a father. He gave me the gift of time. And for that I am forever grateful.

    If your dad is still living, be sure to give him a call to say ‘thanks.’ And if he is not, send him a thank-you in a prayer. He will appreciate it.

    Happy Father’s Day, everyone!  I hope you have a wonderful day.
    Posted: June 16, 2017 by Kate Reibel

    Tags: father, father's day, Shawn McCoy

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