In April 2005, I lost my dad to cancer. He was around 60 when he passed, and had lived a life full of adventure, laughs, and love. Yet for me, his passing was not only the loss of my father, but also the loss of my mentor and my best friend. As I grow older, I see so much of him in me: my love of cars; my strong work ethic; my desire to help people; the pride I have in my family; the love I have for my wife and children; and, so much more.
I am not the same person since my dad passed. Unfortunately, some of that statement is a compliment and some is not. My dad brought out the best in me, he challenged me to strive for great things, to dream big, to laugh at life’s events, and to love as if there was no tomorrow. It has been over a decade since he passed, and sometimes I find myself reflecting on whether I still follow those same challenges. Some would say I do: I have an MBA and am the CFO of a $150 million organization; I have a loving wife of more than 22 years and two handsome sons, all whom I love and share life’s laughs; and, I have traveled, hiked, and camped in some of the most beautiful places in the US. Yet, the desire to challenge myself to achieve even greater things remains in my thoughts.
And so remains my challenge…to do and achieve something great like my father did: to live a life that when my time is up on this earth, that my legacy, memory, and passion is still remembered by those I loved, those lives I impacted, and those who knew me. For when that legacy remains, I will have truly become the man my father challenged me to be.
Challenge: Never stop challenging yourself to achieve great things; but more importantly, challenge yourself to live a life that leaves a legacy.