All hail Dad. He's a great guy. Sure, you'll always remember him for teaching you to hang in there at the plate against that fiery fastball. He sat next to you and smiled through clenched teeth as you learned how to drive by using his prized convertible. And he was the intimidating protector who greeted that scruffy boy who warily came to your front door to take you to the prom. However, your Pop also was likely a learned man who earned his stripes in the tough, cruel world by having to do more than his share of heavy lifting. He sacrificed mightily so that you wouldn't have to. Today is Father's Day, and the Times sought to celebrate the wisdom of these fine men by asking some Hernando County residents: What is the best advice your father gave you?
Frankie Burnett, Brooksville City Council member
"My father told me to respect others and their property and, above all, to get all of the education you can. To him, education is what opens all doors. I try to pass that along to every young person I meet." Larie Dewitt Hensley, proprietor of Mallie Kyla's Cafe in Brooksville
"My dad taught me the importance of always doing the right thing and to follow my heart. He said to stick with your principles because life is short. There are no guarantees." Maj. Royce Decker, commander of the Hernando County Sheriff's Office services bureau
"My father taught me to do everything the right way, the best way and the honest way. His philosophy was that life takes over before you know it. He was big on education because he only got as far as the 11th grade when he went into the service during the war. He inspired me to keep at it. Right now, I'm working on my Ph.D." Pat Crowley, executive director of the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce
"Getting a good education was my dad's best advice. At the age of 18, I moved out of our house in Long Island to Manhattan, and that disappointed him because he knew I probably wouldn't go back to school. Eventually, I did, but it wasn't until I was 25 or 26. He was right." Jeff Stabins, Hernando County commissioner
"My dad always told me to be courteous to others, but one particular piece of advice that stands out is that when people are talking about their families, don't interrupt by talking about your own family. It sounds simple, but that was his way of saying, 'Be polite.' "
Logan Neill can be reached at email@example.com or (352) 848-1435.