Monday, June 29, 2009


this week, my mom and dad celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. nearly 200 family and friends from around the country came to town and packed out the great room of the ritzy sharon heights country club to eat, laugh, sing, speechify, and otherwise celebrate my parents' big day.

the day was a testament to many things:
  • the musicality and showmanship of nephew jm, niece m, and the entire h family.
  • the creative artistry of my sister k and affable, humorous, upfront mc stylings of my brother b. those two did a ton of work to make the day a great one.
  • the deep loyalty of some long-time friends. one of the great moments of the day was when "uncles" c and b invited my dad up for a song they wanted to dedicate to him - "oh Lord, it's hard to be humble."
  • the courageous, enterprising, persevering spirit of the generation that immigrated from china.
my brother, sister, and i each had the opportunity to offer a few words to honor mom and dad, sharing our recollections of some of the best of what they have shared with us. the grandkids - all six that can talk - also expressed their appreciation. all of them were great, and m and i had a number of folks come by to compliment b and n for being so poised and well-spoken. lots of talking, but all of it reasonably entertaining.

my father surprised some of us by concluding his words of appreciation by singing a love song to my mom - "the way you look tonight" (acapella, no less) - still the romantic, after all of these years.

i was reminded of more than a few interesting facts about my folks during the trivia game - that my dad's nickname was 'loverboy' (so christened by my mom's dad!), that he had had more than eight steady girlfriends (!), that my mom was only 12 when they met (he was 16 and didn't notice her much, other than that it was remarkable that a 12 year old could drive a big oldsmobile!), and that they had written to each other pretty much every day when they were apart during their courting years. amazingly, my mom still has all of the letters he sent (sometimes, more than one a day!).

all in all, it was a wonderful tribute to my parents' love for one another and the fruitfulness of their generous friendship. here's to you, mom and dad - in honor of your long partnership and in the hope of a future that continues to be filled with significance and overflowing joy!

two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. if one person falls, the other can reach out and help. but someone who falls alone is in real trouble. likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. but how can one be warm alone? a person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.
ecclesiastes 4:9-12


Bora said...

wonderful! Congrats to your parents!

I love the group photo, too, but who is that dignified grey-haired gent on the right?

sharonhi said...

Please pass on my congratulations as well. What a handsome family- and talented! Good thing I can't think of an event where my family would have to pull out that kind of performance. (I suggested Kai tell knock knock jokes for his school talent show) And your dad singing that song- how sweet is that?

I remember your parents when they were married half as long- do they age?

PhilB-D said...

What a great family gathering, and what a great family! Congratulations to you parents - if you the chance, please send them my love...