Influence is forever

Dad’s birthday is Kansas Day.

It was always easy to remember, even though their births were 49 years apart.

Clarence Edward Buchman continues as our mentor and hero, despite being gone 32 years.

Our life always reflects his philosophies. Whenever making a problematic decision, we query: “What would Dad do?”

Different people remember Dad as a grocery store butcher, a farmer, a mechanic, a carpenter, a cowboy. He was all.

In younger days, some contended, there wasn’t the wildest horse that Dad wouldn’t try, having nerves of steel throughout his lifetime.

Despite losing his left hand to a pull-combine accident before we were born, it didn’t slow Dad down.

Successful as a businessman, with one hand Dad continued to be a hunter, fisherman,  refrigeration repairman and renovated four rental apartments, compete with elaborate cabinetry.

Most memorable was when Dad painted the storefront, putting stilts on a 32-foot extension ladder in order to get it done. Imagine a one-handed man carrying a spray gun, climbing one ladder to  mount another ladder on stilts to reach the top of a tall two-story building, and painting it all.

One of Dad’s happiest days was when the “little farm” was purchased, so we could get our first horse. Dad soon had another horse too, hogs, cattle, more land, machinery, even a combine just like the one that had taken his hand.

A very good cowboy friend best remembers Dad lighting his trademark pipe with one hand while mounted on “Queen.” She was the same spotted mare that one time violently bucked Dad off, saddle, bridle and all, and he got right back on after walking a mile to catch, and re-tack her.

Just two days before his passing, Dad was out by himself baling hay for us to put in the barn. One of the last things Dad said to us: “Did you get the hay picked up?”

We hadn’t, and that is the biggest mistake we’ve ever made. We did before nightfall, but easily we could have done it earlier.

Reminds us of Luke 9:62: “No procrastination. You can’t put off until tomorrow. Seize the day.” Yet, most importantly, Second Chronicles 7:17: “If you live as your father, pure in heart and action, living the life, attentively obedient to guidance and judgments, then you’ll make it a sure thing.”