by Lisa Moody Breslin

Father’s Day unfolds only once a year, but their words of wisdom tend to weave into life every day. Many people in the county, especially when they are raising their own children, are discovering that fathers, indeed, knew best.

“My father was blessed with a beautiful singing voice and a wonderful sense of humor which he passed down to me,” said Irene Mitchell of Westminster. “When I was younger and would need discipline, he would sit me down and talk to me about my actions. I used to think , ‘I wish he would just spank me and get it over with.’ But this taught me that in every situation it is always better to talk things out.”

“ ‘Make decisions based on the eternal, not on the temporary,’ my father taught me,” said Jason Fullen, while working at Hidey’s Landscape Supply Yard. “I do it everyday. This came from him teaching me about faith and to live in the light of eternity, not for the moment.”

My father’s advice wasn’t in sentences or expressions. He just taught me by example how to be a good person. He was a really good man, “ said Dee Raley, who also works at Hidey’s.

“At a time where identity and knowing ones self is more important than ever, my father provided me with some advice at a very young age that has shaped who I am and how I think,” said David Colbert, a McDaniel student and a resident of Westminster. “I remember from a young age hearing my old man say, ‘Everybody is somebody else’s weirdo.’ On the surface, this seemingly innocuous quote seems quite uninspired, but when it comes to understanding who you are and what you believe, you can look at it a different way.”

“No matter what choices you make in life, to someone else they will always be weird,” Colbert added. “If you know who you really are and accept that it may not always be accepted, there is a good chance you’ll end up someone you want to be.”

“Never give up. And I’m a persistent guy,” John Bigley, Customer Service Clerk at Shoppers said while fixing the money order machine. The machine was giving him a fit but he said he just wanted to be sure it was working before he left for the day.

“I remember when I was 10-years-old, my father told my mother that when my age group came to retirement, we would be fine,” said Pat Mattison, a Catonsville resident and a front end clerk at Shoppers Food Warehouse in Westminster. “But his grandchildren’s generations would not be fine. I had seen this come true with all the business closing and people losing their homes. My father was a Harvard Business School graduate.”

“My dad always taught me to be a leader, not a follower,” said Robert Mapp, a Westminster resident and crew leader for Lawn-Smart Outdoor Services.

“My biological father taught me to always work hard and persevere.  Don’t complain, just do it,” said Lora Andrews of Uniontown.  “In my childhood he farmed 40 acres and worked full time as a police officer for Baltimore County.  He worked rotating shifts and would often work all night then come home, feed a slew of animals, bale hay, etc. and maybe get a few hours of sleep before doing it again.”

“ Even now, although he has been living with Leukemia for several years, he still accomplishes a ton of things everyday in his yard, work shop, helping others,” she continued. “ When he gets tired he rests, and then goes back out there.  He never complains about how drained or sick he feels, even after treatments.  For better or worse, I inherited that same drive and determination.”

Other Pieces of Popular Advice

Appreciate little victories in life. Don’t focus on the major wins; it’s the small accomplishments that usually go unnoticed that you should be proud of. – Kaitlyn Dudley, New Windsor

My dad showed me how to be a hard worker. He taught me that if I wanted to get anywhere in life, get out there hard. If you do good, things will happen. I have always taken that with me in life and it has gotten me far. He also showed me how to check my oil in the car. I new it was important to take care of my vehicle myself. He showed me how to be strong and independent and he never raised his voice to us as we grew up. – Michele Kowalksi, Westminster

If you say something, always follow through. My father was never late. – Karin Ross, PNC Bank

My parents separated when I was 10 and my stepdad came into my life when I was 17.  So, at 47, I feel very grateful to have had both men in my life this long.  My stepdad is also a very hard worker, but he taught me the value of family and taking time out to enjoy the fun things in life like a good cigar or a weekend away.  He is a devoted family man and the kind of person who you want to ask for advice because he’s been open to so many experiences in life. I find myself at a crossroads in life – the ingrained will to work hard, be productive and not let others in the community down – but the need to devote more time to my daughter, family, friends and myself.  I’m lucky to have both influences, because without working so hard for so long, I wouldn’t now know how important those other things really are! – Lora Andrews, Uniontown

Do the right thing. – Iqubal “Ick” Moledina, Owner of International Foreign Car Service.

“Do the best you can everyday, and have a positive attitude,” he taught me. I used to enjoy riding in the back of my dad’s car on the rumble seat, so I could bounce around. I will always remember family time, especially time around the dining room table. My parents, along with my three sisters and I, would hold hands for Grace, which is something I continued with my husband and three children. – Marlene Taylor, Westminster

“Here today and gone tomorrow,” and “Your two best friends are God and your wallet.”  Those are two things my father always said. – Cierra Jackson, Westminster

My father used to always tell me, “be  as wise as a serpent and as harmless as a dove.” – Barbra McAllister of Westminster

Every night my father would sit in his rocker and read his Bible faithfully. He would also get on his knees and pray every night before bed. I now do my devotion every night. My father was a railroad man, which allowed me to get free tickets and see different places. – Mary Brown, Westminster

Be quiet when fishing so you can nab a big one. Be quiet when you are fishing for a man; listen to what he says in his actions and his words. Be quiet when fishing for a job so you don’t say too much and you can hear what an employer is expecting from you. – Teresa, Westminster 

By example, my father taught me that when making decisions throughout your life, always keep your future plans in mind. Every decision you make has a consequence, whether it’s good or bad. Many of your decisions will also affect other people, so be sure to try your best. Do the right thing and don’t let anything get in the way of your future. – Dominic Mayer (with some help from his mother, Julie), Hampstead

Story contributors: Anne Blue, Pearl Fulton, Julie Maize