This is the eulogy I wrote for my Papaw, Tom Lovingood, who passed away on 10/08/2012. I wanted to share it with my writing world, because he is so much the reason I am who I am. I ache for the day I can see him again ~
The dictionary definition of a strong person is, “one of great moral power, being especially able, competent, and courageous.”
These attributes were visible on Tom Lovingood as plainly as the Carolina hat, that always doted the American flag, sat on his head. His strength was so present, I could almost smell it float into the room alongside his Old Spice aftershave. He wore it everyday, and couldn’t help but to spill it onto others.
The Lovingood’s believe in strength because we were bred to do so. We believe in honesty, patriotism, and guts. We believe in grit, imperfection, and hard work. We believe in “I love you” at the end of phone calls, and remembering people’s birthdays. We believe in visiting elderly people who have no one else, picking the runt of litters, and telling the truth even when it’s as ugly as the darkest part of the night.
We do not believe in laughing at others, taking the path of least resistance, or letting people go hungry. We do not believe in humoring people, keeping quiet when we should speak, or speaking when we should remain quiet. We do not believe in strangers, or holding grudges. We do not believe in the word, “hate”.
Of all the things we believe, or do not believe, above all, we believe the things Tom, Dad, Papaw, or Friend taught us. He taught us how to love the way he did, but cautioned us to keep our tempers milder than his. He taught us he wasn’t perfect, but that he told it like it was. He taught us how to be real, and how to remember to check our own actions before someone else’s. He taught us to be people here for other people. He taught us how to live, because he knew how to love.