My eulogy to my Dad the day of his funeral.
November 2, 2012
Today, we have come together to pay our respects and say goodbye to my Dad, William Clave Uriah Titsworth. Only after his passing have I truly realized what was most important to Dad. Family, his family, being close to us, something from the stories he told that he truly did not have with his parents. See, Dad didn’t have his parents long into his life, his parents having divorced when he was around six years old. His father later died when Dad was 21 and his Mother about a decade later.
Dad was quick to let you know if he disagreed with your choices but he was
always there to help you do the best you could once you had made your choice. He never stopped trying to teach you and help you learn to do better. Some years back I read a quote in a book, "you do what you know and when you know better, you do better". This is what Dad was always trying to do, help you do better at whatever task you were undertaking. When I was 14 I bought a stereo. Dad told me not to open it until he got home. Well, I opened it, I mean there wasn't anything to set up, you just plugged it in. He was disappointed when he got home from work, however years later I realized it was not because I went against his rule, but rather he wanted to share the experience with me, the kind of thing he never got to do with his Dad. Later, being short on money he had rebuilt an old Ford pickup and when I was 15 I wrecked it into a fence post. Yes, like a lot of fathers, he was angry but together we replaced the bent fender and bumper and it became my transportation for the next few years. When his granddaughter and the young men that were in her life at any given moment were making destructive choices, there was Dad doing his best to teach them how to do better, how to be responsible. My sister and I, whenever we needed a place to live because of some choice we made that didn't turn out as we had hoped, there he was with an open door and a strong opinion, but that opinion was his way of trying to get us to learn, to do, better.
About a month before Dad passed away he insisted on buying Mom this small electric chainsaw so she could trim the trees once he had left us. Now, I am confident to say Mom will not be trimming any trees, that will be my job but his love for her shone through in many different ways. There are many, many more such examples of how he was always thinking of others but I think you get the idea.
My last conversation with Dad was about having me get this old Dodge truck he had been working on for 3 years finally street ready so his granddaughter could have transportation to & from work. Even at the very end, Dad was never about what he wanted for himself but what he could do for others. Because I had him for nearly 48 years I will always know his answer to my question, his words forever a part of me. Dad may have not been as successful in life as others in many ways but when it came to loving his family his success has no equal. He will be missed but we must go on, it is what he wanted and as we go on, he goes with us.