As I paused for a moment in my PRIDE Month preparation frenzy (Take a moment to look at the ChicagoPride.com PRIDE Guide) to reflect on my Father, I realized that I am not only going to share about him but I'll be sharing about a person I look up to greatly!
From the very first moment of birth, I think I was destined to be like him. My name, William Llewellyn Pritchard bares his name. Although the family name of Llewellyn (I've been told that my Fathers first words to me were "Now that's hell of a lot of L's!") was given to me for my middle name, I believe with that comes a great responsibility to live up to a great legacy! To know my Father, one must first start with his Father; also named Llewellyn.
As far back as I can remember, I was told how my grandfather surrounded my Father with "steadfast love". He was hard working, great dressing, and always had a whistle as he stepped. He and my grandmother placed my father at the top of their list in priority! Although I never got to meet my grandfather, I believe that his impact on my Father's life, impacts me today!
Like me, my father enters a room mouth first. No doubt about it, he has a commanding presence. There is however a wonderful gift my Father possesses; the gift of listening! With a resume and friends list that reads more like a who's who in global influence, he stops to hear the needs of those around him. He takes time to invest in his neighborhood, nation and the world. He is a life changer AND world changer!
With the simple gesture of hiring college students to do work around the house, he speaks into their lives. He's been known keep the same student's during their whole tenure in school, thereby helping to provide their education. (Something he has always championed!) He's known to also keep a relationship with many of his former students well after their school years, making them adjunct members of our family!
His lifes work with the justice system has helped countless millions that have gone unnoticed previously. His papers on the subject of immigration have yielded immeasurable difference in the fare treatment of those less fortunate; relating to them by his family's own trek from Wales.
Even still today, he tirelessly works to raise funds and awareness for the American Bar Association World Justice Program. (WJP) The WJP is an initiative that will engage leaders from other disciplines, (i.e. Architecture, education, environment, human rights, religion, etc.) to explore how the rule of law impacts them and how they can collaborate to advance it. Truly a World changer!
As you can tell, I admire my Father very much. I've always said if I weren't his son, I'd still have high regard for him! I am however lucky to call him my Father! With that comes a privilege that only a few are allowed. Like his father, he is one hard working fellow, who always dresses swell and has a smile whilst doing it; and yet, his family comes first! I know that I can call him 24/7! He is my greatest source of wisdom and counsel, he calls me all the time, and he never lets me forget of his love and support for me.
I must say that there is something special that only he and I share in our family. Not only are we both comical and ready to throw a party for any given occasion; but we have a definite mission (A drive really!) to make our world a better place before we leave it.
June celebrates our fathers. Today I honor mine for all his "steadfast love" and friendship! Where ever your Dad is this Father's Day Sunday, take some time to celebrate him!
See you at the next party Dad!