Father’s Day has always been a water holiday in the McGehee household. To anyone who knows me, this isn’t exactly breaking news. I haven’t fished every Father’s day, but I’ve certainly fished more than not.
After I went to college and got married, I tried to make it a habit to go fish with Dad on Father’s day. Fishing was something he and I had always done together and it just made sense for us to spend it on the water. We haven’t been able to go every single Father’s Day and once my kids came along, it got harder to continue to make that annual trip.
But when we do get to go, it’s always been special. There have been good trips, so-so trips and even a few where we didn’t catch anything at all. But none of that mattered. These trips aren’t about the fishing or catching. They are about spending time on the water with the man who taught me to fish and so much more. Without him, I wouldn’t be the man, or for that matter, the father that I am today.
There’s no way I can tell you all of the life lessons that he’s passed on over the years, but I can say that a lot of them have been while we were on the water. I’m truly thankful for all of that knowledge that he passed along to me and I’ve done my best to honor him by trying to be as good of a Father to my children as he has been to me.
As I think back on trips past with Dad, I remember the special moments that we shared together. Not only on the water, but also, in the woods, at work and just sitting around the house. His sense of adventure and the fact that he never met a challenge that seemed insurmountable will be with me until my last days in this world.
So as I head out to the water for this particular Father’s Day, it will be the third Father’s Day since we lost Dad. The time on the water is still special. He taught me that. But I’d give up a good portion of my future days on the water to be able to spend just one more day with him. He was loved and he is missed terribly. As a Father myself, I can’t think of a better way to be remembered. I know that’s how my Dad would want to be remembered.
Thanks to the sponsors who make this all possible: Lowrance Electronics, Phoenix Bass Boats, Denali Rods, Bryan’s Marine, BoatUS Angler, Power Pole, Costa del Mar Sunglasses and Mississippi Van Lines. Without all of you, none of this would be possible.