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Yes, Sir, Daddy Darling, Sir... Salute Twice (for my dad)

By Minnette Meador 

It was a bright September morning in 1959, the kind that sparked apples on your cheeks, when Dad and I walked across the school parking lot. The brick building loomed gargantuan in front of us, the pillared vestibule filled to the brim with noisy kids. Some were confident, smug, smacking each other on the shoulders as if to say “this is my place”, while others bounced against their parent’s hands in fidgety excitement. I was one of those.  

The man holding my hand was tall, dark, with abundant strands of wavy black hair (always perfectly groomed), and shining black eyes. I glared at the other kindergartners when we approached, but then tucked myself behind his leg when they glared back.  

There was never a more comforting place than behind that leg. My little arms reached around the knee and held on for life. His dark uniform smelled of cigarettes and dry cleaning solution. I loved that smell. 

This was my hero, my dad. In his…

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