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An Open Letter to MY Dad, Don Lyons, on Father’s Day

First, let me wish ALL dad’s a very happy Father’s Day.

It has been said that any guy can father a child, but it takes a man to be a dad.

Mine is one such man.


Todd E. Lyons

There’s also a saying that says, as it relates to children and their parents, “the apple didn’t fall from the tree.”  This couldn’t be more true than in the case of me and my dad, Don Lyons.

My dad was born in Clinton, Oklahoma and just two weeks ago celebrated his 68th birthday.  Most people who I introduce him to for the first time do not believe he is anywhere near that chronological age as he is very young at heart.

My dad taught, instilled and fostered much in me that is a majority of who I am today.

He always had, and still has, music playing.  All kinds.  Really.  Richie Havens.  Bob Dylan.  Montovani. The Eagles.  Scottish bagpies, fife and drums. Nina Simone. Neil Diamond.  Olivia Newton-John.  .

Is it a wonder I ended up playing music (not mine!) for a living?!?!

He also taught me the love of sport and how competition is often a microcosm of life itself.  Sometimes the best team doesn’t always win.  Life isn’t fair.  “Did you try your best?”

I hope I’ve accepted these simple truths and can answer “yes” to that question.  Once, after getting cut from the 7th grade basketball team at West Valley Junior High (the lowest moment I had ever felt in my life at the time) it was my dad who helped me to make sense of it all as it related to what would become the REST of my life.  I’ve never forgotten his compassion and wisdom he gave me at that point.

Also, it’s really no wonder that I am, to this day, a dyed-in-the-wool Mariners, Seahawks, Huskies and Sonics (R.I.P.) fan.

If you ever get the chance to catch my dad, he hangs out at the Legion Hall a bit these days, please introduce yourself.  A.) He’ll likely buy you a drink and B.) you will have a new friend.

Much like I have had for my entire life.

I love you, dad.  Happy Father’s Day!

Todd E. Lyons and his dad, Don, at the “Gun Show” celebrating Todd’s 40th birthday

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