Eulogy for my dad, by Rachel Marquez Asprec

Shared by Rachel Marquez-Asprec on November 17, 2017

  When I think of my Pop, the first word that comes to mind is KIND. My pop was a kind, caring and compassionate man. he was a kind father, always listened to us kids when we were upset. One of my fondest, funniest memories is when I was about 5 years old, and my dad had grown a beard. Being 5, I didn’t recognize my bearded father, and started crying, nonstop. Instead of yelling at me, or punishing me, my Pop went and shaved his beard off. What kind of father indulges his crazy crying 5 year old? That’s the kind of guy my father was. Understanding and kind. He loved animals and people, and was very sentimental. He was known to buy a homeless person a meal, to stop to pet an animal, and loved his own animals very much.

 The second word that comes to mind is CHARMING. My dad could charm the pants of the rattlesnake. He charmed people in many ways. Store owners and waitresses alike loved my dad. They would always stop to say a “hello”, and a ‘what are you up to today?’,because my pop was charming and always had some interesting thing to say. He made people feel special, and the ordinary became a little less ordinary in his presence. The day after he died, my sister and I took my step-mother Lenora into his favorite restaurant for dinner. One after the other, they all came up, with tears in their eyes, to offer  their condolences and to share a story. That’s how likeable and charming pop was.

 The third word that comes to mind is HUMOROUS. Pop had a great sense of humor. He had a sly,devilish grin that he would flash, and an awesome dry sense of humor. My father had a penchant for pranks as well. I remember as a kid overhearing him and his friend from work laughing about a prank my dad pulled on a co-worker on a construction site they were working security on. This coworker was an angry, troublesome man. How did my Dad pull a prank on him? One day the jerky co-worker was using a port a potty, and my dad tipped the port o john over while said co-worker was on the toilet. HA! Classic Ralph Marquez move right there.

 The fourth word that came to mind when I think of my father is SKILLED. My father was a skilled man. He was one of the first non-Asians to learn Wing Chun Gung Fu. He moved to the Bay Area to learn from some of the greats in the 1960s. His Master was Ron Lew, who is one of the greatest martial artists in the world. He studied with some of the students and contemporaries of Bruce Lee. He was a highly skilled martial artist. I have many memories of my Dad teaching martial Arts, seeing him throw bigger men than himself across the room. My father was also an excellent shot, and was a highly skilled marksman. My Dad never graduated high school, but he was well-read and could tell you facts and stories that would amaze you. He was well-versed in Eastern medicine and philosophy. Yes, my father  was an intelligent, skilled man.

 The fifth and most important word I think of to describe my dad is FATHER.

My dad wasn’t the perfect father,because perfect doesn’t exist. When a person becomes a

parent themselves, you realize that parenting means trying your best to do the right thing, working hard to support your family, loving your children unconditionally, and hoping that in the end, you did the best job you could. I know my dad loved us, he worked hard for us, and he did the best to his ability. That’s all anyone could ask.

“Beautiful is the man who leaves a legacy that of shared love and life. It is he who transfers meaning, assigns significance and conveys in his loving touch the fine art and gentle shaping of a life. This man shall be called, Father.” -Stella Payton

Rest In Peace Dad, thanks for being the best father that you could be. Love, Rachel

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