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MY FATHER (Pop)
As he was known as in his later years, Pop, my father, was the ultimate role model. We all looked up to him with a feeling of almost reverence. He didn't give spankings -- just a word would do. You remember, he said as much about his own father. Nothing would do but the best he could manage -- all his seven kids had a college education; and that took some sacrificing and setting of priorities. You will recall he was a Methodist minister in West Virginia and Kentucky before moving to Durant, Oklahoma to practice law. He became known by his peers as Judge Tyree, although he was never actually a judge. That says something about the impression he made.
I remember my conviction that life could not go on without him. He has now been gone for over 50 years; and my feeling for him is as strong and positive as if it were yesterday.
In Dallas, the family was active in the First Methodist Church at Ross and Harwood. We attended Sunday School and Church. Pop taught a class of women, for which he was eminently qualified. He was also a "Located Minister" and, as I have said before, performed the wedding ceremony for Elinor and me. He died shortly thereafter, and didn't see our first born. His passing was to us catastrophic, especially as he was only 68.
I remember a couple of things Pop said to or about me. Once he said to me, "You haven't got enough sense to pour p... out of a boot with the instructions printed on the heel." I don't remember what occasioned the outburst, but I'm sure it was deserved. I must have a done 180 degrees over the years. It was about the time I was unable to return to S.M.U. and was helping out. Virginia told me that Pop said, "Andy is a prince among men." That is the statement I most treasure to this day and by which I fondly remember my Pop.
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