I always think about my dad. I think about the times we had together and the many laughs (and shanks) we shared. My most vivid and favorite memories were times we spent together during the summer. That's when our relationship really came alive, and it was our cottage on the lake in western Michigan where it all went down.

The day started with a bowl of Frosted Flakes before we headed out to the neighboring West Shore Golf “Club”for 18 holes of laughs, frustrations, and kick away bogeys. From there it was back home for a quick lunch and then to the beach with mom, brothers, sisters, and friends. Dad would inevitably hang back from the beach until late afternoon when the sun wasn’t as strong to protect his “Irish skin,” as he put it.

Late afternoon walks with my dad became my favorite part of the day. He waved and said hello to all of his old St. Louis friends up and down the shoreline. I always felt like I was walking with the kindest and most popular man in the world. After, Dad and I would take a nap listening to the waves while the late afternoon sun warmed our bodies. As far as I was concerned, and still am, it was the closest thing to heaven.

Fortunately, I became a dad in 2014 and I try like hell to create similar memories for my boy, Jack. I’m doing my best to live up to my dad’s standards. This summer Jack and I will spend time playing golf, swimming, going for ice cream and laughing. We will visit our cottage in western Michigan to spend time with family and friends, and we will have a blast. Though the Frosted Flakes are likely to be replaced by Jack’s favorite, Fruity Pebbles.

Thank you, Dad and thank you Jack. And thanks to all of you who help make summers so much fun for all of us at johnnie-O.

My best,