View Full Version : For My Daddy

02-06-2007, 08:17 AM
There were no Forum Birthdays, so I hope you don't mind.

Carlo Perfumo who would have been 83 today. He died 7 years ago after a two year battle with Myelodysplasia. He was the dad of dads and the grandfather of grandfathers.
He once told my mother that he felt he had not done as much with me as he had with my siblings. (I was the prissy one) He did. He taught me to love. He let me make my own choices even when he knew they were bad ones, because in the end it would make me part of who I grew to be. In my life I heard I love you twice from my father, he didn’t have to speak the words. It was always there. When I look back it was there when I walked in the house and heard him playing guitar while he and my mom sang “You Are My Sunshine”. When he would pull into the driveway after work and the neighborhood kids were there to have him fix their bikes, when he took each and every grandchild to the barn to make something of their own from wood. I can’t tell you how many times I watched him take my oldest daughters hand and lead her out to the field to pick wild flowers. I knew from the way she would look up at him that she too was being taught to love, without words.
With my dad…words were never needed. I miss him and at 51 I am still and will always be daddy's little girl.

02-06-2007, 08:24 AM
Happy Birthday Mr. Carlo Perfumo, the man who tought the woman I love just how to love back. I wish I had the opportunity to have met you. I know you would have been a great influence in my life, as your daughter has been.



Phillip Allen
02-06-2007, 08:24 AM
A life well remembered is a life well spent...

Rick Starr
02-06-2007, 08:30 AM

Beautiful cake,

Beautiful Dad,

Beautiful kid,

Beautiful tribute.

Bruce Hooke
02-06-2007, 08:32 AM
Beautiful indeed!

Wild Dingo
02-06-2007, 08:34 AM
Happy birfdy ol fella ;)

One can only hope to inspire such a daughters love long after one is gone... I hope my own girls feel such a depth of love :cool:

Tar Devil
02-06-2007, 08:35 AM
Incredibly sweet, Claudia.

02-06-2007, 08:56 AM
Birthday of Birthdays....

02-07-2007, 10:37 AM
Yesterday I sent my daughter Christina a link to this thread. This was her response. Moving it from Adobe to Word and then to here changed spacing and such , but here it is. (she received a 95)

I wrote this paper for a class a couple of weeks ago. It was actually a lot longer, but I wasn't supposed to have more than 750 words. Obviously, I couldn't make it that short, but I had to get rid of some pretty important stuff. Needless to say I was an absolute wreck when I wrote it. You are welcome to post it on the WBF if it is appropriate.

Christina Kasmarski January 17,2007
Word Count: 928

Three Pennies

After staring at the caller ID in dismay for several seconds, I answered the call. Grandpa never called me unless the matter was important. When I greeted him, unsure what to expect, he simply stated that he had something for me and that I must drive home so he could give it to me. I promised I would be in town the coming weekend so we could meet. When I hung up the phone, I did not know whether this was "Grandpa's bad week" or if his request was valid.
In the last few years, just after my grandmother's death, he developed myelodysplasia- a rare blood disorder which often leads to bone marrow disease and leukemia. Unfortunately, Grandpa was in the beginning stages of bone marrow disease. His deteriorating condition caused him much pain, and his body required strong medication and frequent blood transfusions to remain alive. In the week preceding his monthly transfusion, his mind often wandered and he would develop temporary dementia. My family referred to this week as "Grandpa's bad week."
At the time, I was fresh in the new chapter of my life. I just moved to Orlando, about an hour from home, to attend the University of Central Florida. At eighteen, I juggled a full-time class schedule, three part-time jobs, and a social life. I didn't go home very often, just when I felt the need to visit my "roots" in an effort to recollect myself.
That weekend, I packed my things and headed home. I tried to figure out what Grandpa had for me, knowing that it was possible he called during a state of dementia and would not remember the request. My mind was stirring with possibilities as I revisited countless wonderful childhood memories with Grandpa. He was the strongest man I knew - a diesel mechanic whose passion was woodworking in the large two story barn that I helped him build, or at least I like to believe that I helped even though I was only seven at the time. Grandpa always told me that he could not have done it without me. He worked every day of his life, at least until he got sick. Even then, it was almost impossible to keep him away from a wrench. He taught me to use tools, construct furniture, drive a tractor and fix all sorts of things - all before I turned ten years old.
As a child, I was lucky to have great grandparents. I spent nearly every weekend with them.
During the day, Grandpa and I spent hours in the barn building anything that we could think of. At dinnertime, Grandma would scold Grandpa for teaching me "un-ladylike habits" like burping the ABC's. After dinner, Grandpa handed me all of the change in his pockets. Excitedly, I ran upstairs to his bedroom, threw open the closet doors and, one by one, dropped each coin into a four foot Chianti bottle. Each time, Grandpa promised that when it was full, that bottle and its contents would be mine.
That was the routine at least a hundred times until my teenage years, when I didn't visit as often.
At bedtime, Grandpa would give me a wink. That was my cue to sneak to the TV room and play Atari. After hours of Pac-man and Pole Position (a racecar game) with Grandpa, I would sneak past Grandma's room and go to sleep in my room.
When I arrived at Grandpa's house, unsure what to expect, he met me at the door. That familiar half-smile, soft face, and smell of diesel fuel (after years of working on diesel engines he reeked of it) instantly calmed me, as always. He walked slowly and his body was frail and weak. It was apparent that the blood disorder was taking over his body, and for the first time I realized that he was not going to live much longer.
Grandpa said nothing, but reached in his pocket and produced three shiny new coins. At that moment, I knew exactly what I came for. My eyes welled with tears as I walked with him to the bedroom, threw open the closet doors and, one by one, I dropped each coin into the four foot Chianti bottle. I had not seen that bottle in years, since it was only half full. Until that moment, I actually forgot about the bottle. The three coins filled that bottle to the top. We were smiling so intensely
that we laughed out loud. Tears of happy memories, tears of accomplishment streamed down both our faces. We spent hours talking about the fun we had when I was a child and we practiced burping the ABC's. I left that night with a Chianti bottle filled with change in the back seat of my car.
Within weeks, Grandpa's condition worsened. He ended up with Hospice care and was nearly bedridden. I had a bad feeling one day and called my mother to check his condition. She told me that he wasn't doing well and that he was asking for me to visit. I left Orlando within hours, but I didn't make it in time to say goodbye.
Of thirteen grandchildren, I was Grandpa's favorite. He gave me strength, motivation, self- confidence and love. He died almost seven years ago. There isn't a day that passes that I do not think of Grandpa. He was buried at the Florida National Cemetery next to Grandma with a gold wrench in one hand and three pennies from our Chianti bottle in the other.

Wild Dingo
02-07-2007, 10:53 AM
Tahnks Claudia... gawd the tears!!

Okay look honey give Christina a huge hug from me will you? :cool: That was brilliant... 95? whats wrong with her bloody teachers? THAT deserves the full book! In fact I will give it to her... 1000% from Dingo! :cool:

He was a proud grandpa and she was a wonderful granddaughter to and for him

Gawd there gfoes the bloody waterworks AGAIN!! :o

Bob Cleek
02-07-2007, 12:25 PM
Any relation to John?

Phillip Allen
02-07-2007, 03:09 PM
I read it Claudia...I hadn't thought of burbing the alphabet...hmmmm

"Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death"

02-07-2007, 03:32 PM
Aw jeeze, I cry too damn easily.

02-07-2007, 10:21 PM
Great memories

02-08-2007, 09:00 AM

Lew Barrett
02-08-2007, 09:51 AM
Happy Birthday Carlo.
I had the same thought Phillip did about burping the alphabet.
Family is truly the greatest wealth.

Bill Thompson
02-09-2007, 01:08 PM
Wonderful post, Claudia. Your father must have been a really nice guy; obviously some of the goodness rubbed off on you 'cause you've got a fine daughter as well.
Bill Thompson

02-09-2007, 01:29 PM
Man. That was wonderful, Claudia. As a father of three daughters I can tell you that you were always in his thoughts, and no matter what or no matter how far away, you were always his little girl.

Mickey Lake