Saturday, January 1, 2011

Song for Zeb

I cannot return to business as usual with my blog or with other things that make up the fabric of my life, without sharing a tribute to my dad, Zeb Fitzgerald. The problem is that I fail when I try to come up with words to say about him. He lived 98 years, almost all of them in San Marcos, TX. During his years he was very active in local and area politics, civic activities, and church life. If there was ever anybody that did not like my dad, I don't know who that might be. He was universally loved and respected. As his old friend Rev. Jack Byrom said, "If there was ever an issue upon which people were taking sides, I knew I could count on Zeb to come down on the right side." My brother and I know we are tremendously blessed to have him for a father and for grandfather to our children. I will miss him for the rest of my life.

Since my words are inadequate, I am borrowing some from my singer-songwriter daughter Emily Herring. Here is the refrain from her song written about him.

"There are men, and then there is this man,
There are lives, and there's a hundred years.
A man pulled up by his boot straps
With a heart to be revered.
So let's all sing Peace in the Valley
And hope that life goes on beyond
Take heart in the gift of knowing him
To remember as we go on."

Emily got to one point in writing and could not figure out what should go next. In a first and very likely last time to do so, I contributed a line to one of her songs. My words are in the last two lines above. We think they are the heart of the song, and I guess a fitting close for this tribute.

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