This week’s article is about an activity that is very close to my family’s heart. We celebrated my daughter’s thirteenth birthday there ten years ago this May and plan on doing it again this year.
Although I ended up being too emotional to speak and had to have my daughter read it for me, this was my eulogy to my dad at his funeral on April 3, 2017. I wanted to share it with my readers in hopes that it may help them find peace in their hard times and joy in their lives.
John Bobosik Eulogy
The other night as I was watching television attempting to wrap my head around John’s passing, I heard a definition of the afterlife in which I found solace and I would like to share it with you. It went heaven and hell, are not necessarily a place of ascension or descension. But, in reality, it is other people’s memories of us that create our own personal heaven or hell. If we live our life in a way that leaves those whose lives we have touched with pleasant memories and in a better place than before they met us, then we have reached heaven. If all we leave behind is anger, heartache, and misery, then we have created our own hell. It is for this reason that I let go of any bad times that we may have had from time to time and choose to remember the good times.
Although John was my stepfather, he was in a lot of ways my dad. He came into our lives when I was 14 like a whirlwind with his hilarious dance style and diverse interests teaching my sister and me things that we may have never learned or even taken an interest in, had he not been a part of our lives. To this day I cannot hear the song, “Whip It” without picturing his silly hip wiggle jump rope dance moves that he always did whenever this song was playing.
He taught me to sail, play golf, and took me to the only father-daughter dance that I was ever able to attend since my birth father died when I was five. His willingness to be a part of my life; allowed me to have those basic things that a daughter dreams of like being walked down the aisle at my wedding.
His passion for motorcycles fueled several generations of motorcycle enthusiast in our family as he enjoyed taking his kids, grandkids and even great-grandkids for rides on the back of whichever motorcycle he had at the time. One of my favorite memories was riding on the back of the V-rod with him as we drove down Fourth Street setting off all of the car alarms. He had a grin the size of Manhattan as he watched my perma-grin in his side view mirror. Then when my daughter was old enough, he took her under his wing and walked her through locating and buying her first motorcycle to her father and I’s chagrin, but building a special bond with her over this common interest that will stay with her for the rest of her life.
When I became of driving age he was all too happy to teach me how to drive a stick-shift in his little Toyota with mom and Lorri sitting in the backseat heckling me. And then when I received my license he was even happier to send me to the store for midnight munchies supplies. For some reason when it came to me in those early years he always seemed to have patience with teaching me new things that he didn’t often show to others, which is where our bond began.
Humor wise, you never knew what to expect from him, as his sense of humor was spontaneous and unusual from buying mom a pair of panties for Christmas with a rollerskating pig on the ass, to sneaking up behind you and scaring the crap out of you. From the first time we met it was obvious that we shared a warped sense of humor, when I accidentally embarrassed my mom as we got off of a roller coaster (he took us to Magic Mountain) and I proclaimed, “I think I’m going to Ralph”, right before mom informed me that his brother’s name was Ralph. John just looked at me laughed and patted me on the back, saying it was no big deal. And, I know that Lorri, mom, and I will never forget the laughs that we had watching him try and cause the weightlifters at the
marina gym to drop their weights by acting gay and flirty with them through the glass window after we would pick-up ice cream at our favorite ice cream shop.
John Bobosik was a complex and sometimes infuriating man, but his heart was as big as any I’ve ever seen. He wasn’t one to hide his opinion or leave you wondering what he was thinking, because he was going to tell you whether you wanted
to hear it or not. He was the most sentimental crusty marshmallow of a man that you will ever meet. On the outside tough and stern, while on the inside being a big softy at heart.
His sentimental side always came out towards mom on those important holidays through doing things such as buying mom a bouquet of red roses, one for every year they have been married, and one extra for the year ahead on each of their anniversaries, or the three valentine’s days in a row that he inadvertently gave mom the same sappy card.
It is for all of these reasons, memories, and experiences that I thank you Dad, from the bottom of my heart.