By Kenneth Stepp
We all had role models as we were growing into the human we are today. Mine was my dad. I met with a friend of mine today, he’s an alpha male like myself. Are alphas born or made? Someone smarter than me will have to answer that one. We talked about our dads, dating, and men today. I told him a quick story about my dad and thought I’d share it with my readers.
I was about 11 years old. My family was originally from West Virginia. I grew up in Louisville Ky and when I was young we visited often. I was alone in the car with dad and we were crossing the border between WV and KY. He pointed to an old bridge. I grew up around that old bridge. I got beat up one day on that bridge. The story began there…
Dad, who beat you up? My dad was Superman in my mind. No one could beat him in a fight, no one. Well son, it was a girl. It was at this point that I lost my mind. Dad, how could a girl beat you up? She was mad at me and just started hitting me. I asked, dad, why didn’t you hit her back? Son, a man doesn’t hit a woman. Then why didn’t you leave? A man doesn’t run either son.
That’s him, that’s my man among men. That is the man I wanted to be just like. My dad was a tough man, an alpha male through and through. He joined the Navy to fight in the war, he boxed while in the Navy. Everyone loved my dad. He was a great friend and a kind man. But if something he loved was threatened, just like why he joined the Navy. He would go to war for what he felt was worth dying for.
My dad lived a humble life. Uneducated, unrefined, and unapologetic about who he was. He loved his wife and his three boys they had together. I was the youngest. That day changed me in ways I am still discovering. One woman was enough for him and he would honor their vows till he left us in November 2011. We all miss him but so much of him remains. We are his legacy.
He raised 3 good men, not perfect but good. I spoke with an ex of mine on the way home today. We are no longer together but still talk from time to time. I retold the story of dad on that bridge. She said something that warmed my heart, she said, Kenneth, you are a good man. I’d rather be called that than wealthy or handsome.
I doubt my dad could understand the impact that story would have on that 11 year old boy that day. I dissect my dad’s life even today and pull wisdom that helps me today. I am single and the singles community looks nothing like it did or should. Men today have it all backwards and women have gotten used to it.
I am sitting in my house now, it’s dark and quiet. My mind strolled through the memories my dad left me while riding all day and I wanted to write about him. On a personal note, although I will never fill my dad’s shoes, he did instill some things in me that I am thankful for to this day.
One woman is enough, if I am in a relationship I am and always have been faithful. He developed in my brothers and me a kind and gentle spirit and raised us to be protectors like he was. If I have good in me I believe he had a hand in all of them.
He taught us to love our God, family, and our country. I thank God every day for that man on that old bridge. My dad worked, fought, and loved with all his heart. That will be good enough for me.