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Welcome to The Primitive Cornish Hovel. A place where I will share my love of prim, vintage, family history, many interests & everyday life. I hope to show you a glimpse of a bygone age through the history of my family & the many 'treasures' I hold dear. Mixed in with this will be snippets of life today. Do drop in again for a visit to see what is happening at 'The Hovel'. Comments are welcomed.

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Sunday, 15 June 2008

Remembering My Dad On Father's Day


Today is Father’s Day, a day specifically celebrated each year in which to publically honour our fathers. The third Sunday of June is the day in which to do so in many countries including the UK and each year cards and posters arrive in shops weeks before reminding us of this day. Today many will see it as another commercial gimmick, a duty or an excuse to go out for a meal. Some will see it as a day to reflect on what our fathers really mean to us, while others believe that a father should be honoured every day. I personally believe the latter....But where did this all begin.....It appears that the people of Fairmont, West Virginia in 1908 were the first to celebrate Father's Day. After an explosion killing 361 men it is believed that a Grace Golden Clayton suggested to her local Pastor that these men should be commemorated....Followed by Sonora Smart Dodd of USA who was inspired by Mother's Day during a sermon in 1909. To show how thankful she was to her widowed father she worked to have the first Father's Day on June 19 1910, June being the month of his birth.......

My dad's name was Christopher Doyle, seen here in this photograph taken in 1952. Born on December 5 1924 in Daingean, Co. Offally, Ireland to Christopher and Bridget Doyle nee Paisley. As the youngest of 12 children he openly admitted that he was spoilt by both his parents and older siblings...

Young Christy, as he was called by his family, led a happy carefree childhood. Named after his father, my dad had many tales to tell about the mischief he played with his siblings, the chores each day on the family’s smallholding and the many visits he made to his father while he worked as a shoemaker. Life changed for Christy when at the age of ten his beloved father died aged 71. Life became hard for my grandmother and despite my dad obtaining a scholarship to attend the local grammar school she had no alternative but to send him out to work at the age of fourteen.....I cannot imagine how frustrated my dad must have felt. All I remember is that he was brilliant at maths, excellent at drawing up plans and a mind of information. I also know that out of love and respect for his mother he would not have questioned her decision......
However at the age of 17 an inner need to do better in life prompted my dad to leave the shores of Ireland for England. Before he left my grandmother gave my dad a tin containing a small padded picture of Jesus, rosary beads and a silk handkerchief, all previously blessed by the parish priest. This tin remained with my dad until his death on August 22 1981 of cancer. The tin I’m proud to say is now with me but sadly the picture and rosary beads were removed from the tin by a family member......

The tin is now smooth with age, the handkerchief marked with rust where a faint scent of incense lingers still from that blessing all those years ago. It is not just a simple family memento but a record of my dad's life and his mothers before him. This tin saw my dad through his travels to a new life of hardship, sadness, love, reward, laughter, tears, frustration, satisfaction and a life with my mother and his three daughters. My father’s only regret was that he never went back home to Ireland when his mother was still alive.....My father did make that journey back in 1981 and was reunited with some of his sisters. I was finally able to meet my aunts and uncles who gladly told me all about my dad when he was growing up in Ireland. I now finally knew where his traditional family values originated from. My dad may have made many mistakes in his life but what he never forgot was that love, respect and hard work was the foundation of family life. My dad's motto was 'Even though you may come last in a race as long as you've tried your best you've won'.....Thank You Dad for being who you were.....LOL.....

'Any man can be a father. It takes someone special to be a dad.'~ Anonymous

'One father is more than a hundred schoolmasters.'~ 17th century English proverb

2 comments:

Shelley Welsh said...

Oh, Chrissy!!!!

What a beautiful blog you have started!!! I absolutely loved reading your beautiful memories about your special father. I have many cherished memories of my parents as well.

Your home and town sound perfect for a prim lover like yourself!!! Anytime you need help with the renovations, just let me know and I'll be over, as long as you show me around this magical place in the down time!!

Thank you for sharing those sweet memories of your dad!

***~***~*~~*Shelley

KernowWitch said...

Great to see you here Shelley & thank you for your lovely comments. My dad was special & it was a pleasure to share a little about my dad with you....Would love to know about your parents, you have a blog don't you...hint hint...hehe...Would love to have you visit & I would show you all the places that makes Cornwall the magical place it is...oh & yes may be some renovations as well...lol...Hugs Chrissy x