Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Dr Arthur Zampella 1917-1992

Dr Arthur Zampella
Dr Arthur Zampella May 15, 1917 - January 9, 1992
January 9, 1992  was a rainy and cold day. I was living in a railroad flat in Jersey City, NJ. I was living a few blocks from the place that my father had been born in 1917.  It had been many years since my father had a series of heart attacks, and  coronary by-pass surgery. Most of his brothers had all died and I remember him being saddened that most of his friends were also gone.

Growing up, I knew he was not always in the best health, but on that fateful day, I still lament January 9th as his final goodbye. I was twenty four when he died. I am fifty-one now. I carry his memory with me each and every day. His wedding ring on my finger as a daily companion. Once while playing softball in Central Park I thought I had lost his ring. I sat in the grass devastated that I had lost yet another link to him. The ring was recovered. I have his watch and some other personal possessions of his. He was a man of humility with few items collected throughout a lifetime.

I am most grateful that each and every day I can walk the very grounds at Idylease that he did. If it snows, I can remember him pulling me on a sled with his rubber galoshes. Everywhere I look, I can remember a story or a spot of him being there.  I am grateful that he equipped me to carry on. I belong here. I have so many people amongst the living that have made this possible. They know who they are and I am eternally indebted to them.

I often feel his presence with me at milestones in my life since he is gone. I know he would be saddened by my setbacks and elated by my successes.

When I was twenty-four, I thought my father’s death would teach me about dying. At fifty-one, I think it has taught me mostly about living; that life is short but meaningful; that even though time is measured, there is some time, if you pay attention; and that everything that matters in life is in the here and now.

I miss you Dad.

-Richard Zampella
January 9, 2018

No comments:

Post a Comment