Dear Tom,

Hadassah let me know that you passed away on Friday.  I was so sad to hear that you are no longer a physical presence on this earth.  From being around you and your family – I got to know your fun, sweet and gentle spirit.  I feel so lucky to have witnessed the beautiful and tender relationship you have with your daughter and those around you.  When she asked me to send a photo of you to the funeral home for your obituary, I wanted to send the one at the top of this post.  To me it encompasses you.

I think that sometimes the smallest moments are the ones that mean the most.  I think that the fact that you raised a daughter that recognized that and honored that is incredible.  When she contacted me, I felt like this is too good to be true!  Just a dad and her daughter doing their thing together.  Once I saw you two together, I knew it was so much more than that.  You both knew that your time here was limited and you embraced it.  Savoring every moment like those sweet chocolate milkshakes.

I love that you allowed Haddie to photograph the heck out of you, even while you weren’t feeling your best.  To make sure she got to keep those memories firm and vivid.  That she went out of her way to make sure that you got to have every special moment that was coming, like seeing her in her wedding dress.  You got the first look and then was there with her with she tied the knot with Jeff.

Haddie gave me permission to share some of my favorite moments of the two of you together during the last year of your life.  The unabashed beauty and depth of love between the two of you is something I will treasure being a witness to.  Thank you so much for allowing me and my camera into your life.  May all men strive to become the kind of father that you were and may we all live and love as you did –  without fear or hesitation.

With love and respect,
Heather