He has taught me work ethic, self-discipline and perseverance in life. He has grit, determination and vision. Part of what makes him one of the greatest men I will ever know is his deep faith. Faith in God, faith in farming, faith in family…and faith in me.
Before this day ends and the weekend wraps…I must mention that today marks the birthday of one of the greatest men I have ever had the privilege to work alongside of in my career. He’s taught me the ropes of marketing communications, the advertising agency business along with having a deep passion for agriculture. I fought this man tooth and nail from age 9 to 19 until I realized I was just like him and rather than fight him, I should probably learn from him.
I snapped this picture of my colleague in a business meeting this past spring. We don’t work as often together anymore. He farms full time but is a consultant to the company I work for. Yet he’s the first call I make when the chips are down and I need advice. He’s also the first call when I have a business question or a big accomplishment to share. He says it like it is, whether I want to hear it or not. He’s the voice of reason and a calm for me after a storm. He understands my zealous attitude and can coach me through any situation.
Yes he is absolutely one of the greatest men I will ever know.
He gave me big boots to fill at a young age and taught me how to fill them. For that I am forever grateful to my colleague who I refer to as Fred or Farmer Fred in business. Most of all I just like to call him Dad.
Our kids call him Grandpa Fred and today the girls climbed in his lap while our son and my mom stood behind him in the below picture after a birthday lunch. We sang “Happy Birthday” and celebrated one of the greatest men I will ever know.
Happy Birthday, Dad!
Feel free to share a comment on GriggsDakota and give my dad a birthday shout out. It’s been a tough weekend with 5″ of rain at the farm and a long harvest ahead for my parents and family.