This weekend, family and friends celebrated my Dad’s life. We had a get-together (read: party) on Saturday, and on Sunday, we went to Ellensburg to disperse Dad’s ashes. It was a lovely time, all in all, and I’m happy that Dad knew so many exceptional people.
Being the youngest Feroglia child, I was asked (told) to give a speech. I called it my “keynote address,” and hopefully it will be the precursor to many a keynote speech. However, I’m sure this may be one of the best public speaking opportunities I’ve ever had and will ever have.
I borrowed (used) the final speech from Death at a Funeral (the British 2007 release) as the base for my speech. I thought it captured quite nicely a lot of the sentiment I wanted to express. I changed some things here and there, added some words, and even though it wasn’t entirely original, I think it served its purpose quite well. I’ll share it here, with original parts highlighted.
My father was an exceptional man. He may not have been a perfect man, but he was a good man. And he loved us.
Life isn’t simple. It’s complicated. We’re all just thrown in here together in a world full of chaos and confusion. A world full of questions and no answers, with Death always lingering around the corner.
And we do our best…
My dad did his best.
He always tried to tell me you have to go for what you want in life, because you never know how long you’re going to be here. And whether you succeed or you fail, the most important thing is to have tried.
He reminded me that success is not–and never will be–defined by how much money you have or how much stuff you accumulate. He never said what success was, but I suspect it has something to do with the company you keep.
My father never told me what I could and couldn’t be when I grew up. He let me run circles around a million different ideas, and by my own accord, I ended up exactly where I needed to be.
And that’s exactly what I needed.
A good life is one where, in the end, what remains are a thousand different stories–most of which end with a laugh.
So as you spend time with us, I’d like you to remember my father for who he was–
a decent and loving man.
If only we could be as giving and generous and understanding as my father was, then the world would be a better place.
And that is a life worth celebrating.”