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Keith John Paul Horcasitas

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Father's Day tied in to a teenage memory of when Daddy had to "crack the whip" and "fire me up" on the right path. A prayer for healing and reconciliation for those with "bad dad" memories and a call to sensitivity re: fireworks and Veterans dealing with PTSD.

Pic: Keith and late Daddy, Andres N. Horcasitas, Jr., March 1981, Mexico City, at a Bull Fight!

With Father's Day beckoning, how can I forget my growing up in N'Awlins (New Orleans) and my beloved late Daddy? And with the 4th of July also just around the corner, let me share about some “Father's Day Fireworks!”

Dad embodied a full-fledged “Dale Carnegie Positive Personality,” as he was affectionately called eternally optimistic!

As a faithful Tulane Greenie graduate and sports fan, he certainly earned his perseverance stripes when he had waited 25 years for the football team to finally beat LSU in 1973 in a 14 – 0 rout!

While dad may have not been a “handy-man” with tools like his brother, Uncle Hector, daddy was so helpful to mommy every week by “makin groceries” for her at the Schwegmann's Super Store on Airline Hwy and LaBarre Ave!

Daddy was a pretty even-keeled dude but like the old “E. F. Hutton commercial,” when he got mad, animated and spoke aloud, we surely listened!

Dad and Mom were very flexible and trusting and even allowed us to have a “Kid's Club” downstairs under our shed at our Uptown Broadway house near S. Claiborne Ave., where we could have sleepovers with our friends.

Well, my older brother, David, and I – as young teenagers - had befriended an older teen, Gary, in the neighborhood, so we planned a fun Saturday night in early July but with some mischief.

You see Gary had started to have a crush on a girl, Margaret, who lived about a mile away on Newcomb Blvd. So after midnight, when my parents were sleeping, we snuck out on a walk to Margaret's house.

Well after Margaret and some friends had secretly met with us for about an hour for chit-chatting and flirting with Gary and other older teens, we headed back for home.

When we were about 5 blocks from home, some police flashed their lights and found us hiding behind some bushes; the cops were adamant that we had been shooting fireworks, but we pleaded that was not true . One of the officers surmised that we had rubbed the smell off of our hands in the mud.

So we got taken home in the police car, and when the cop had rang the doorbell, my dad was livid and we high-tailed it to our bunk-bed after dad had dismissed Gary and the other kids to their parents.

Talk about fireworks, dad took off his belt and we definitely had our backside “fired-up” a few times! David and I hardly ever strayed from the path after that, but always knew that Daddy loved us. Happy Father's Day to all, and prayers for healing and reconciliation for those with difficult dad memories.

Post Note Suggestion as we get closer to Independence Day: Some Veterans whom I have worked with in the past can really have a hard time when fireworks are heard, as they may have had very traumatic memories (PTSD) from their military history. So while you may certainly want to appropriately enjoy fireworks on the 4th, do try to be sensitive to neighbors whom you know whom may have difficulty with blasting sounds.

1133 Knollhaven Drive, BRLA 70810,

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Reviewed by Ronald Hull 6/21/2015
Brought back memories of my father. Thanks. I hadn't heard that about some veterans getting upset with fireworks. I certainly see your point.


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