Sunday, June 19, 2011

In Memory of my Dad, Leon W. Brinkley

Today is Father's Day, June 19, 2011. Just five short years ago Father's Day fell on Sunday, June 20, 2006. That was the last Father's Day I was to share with my dad, Leon Waitte Brinkley. He was in the final stages of esophageal cancer. That morning we talked and we remembered well a Father's Day morning dated June 20, 1976. That was the day my mother, Celia Jane Fitzwater Brinkley, died. We talked of the memories of that day for only a moment. Dad then told me he was ready to go as well. I knew he was ready, he wasn't having a good time being here. His body had betrayed him and he wanted to be done with it. He was so ready to let go of this body and join the love of his life.

Leon Waitte "Lee" Brinkley was born 29 January 1929, in Stratton, Kit Carson County, Colorado to Louis Wallace "Wally" Brinkley and Thelma Ellen Scott. He joined an older sister, Wilma Auline Brinkley who had been born 9 August 1927 in Stratton. Lee's middle name was a hand-me-down, having received it from his grandfather, Edward Waite "Ed" Scott (1880-1973) who had received it from his grandfather, Wait Scott (1805-1859). Each generation spelled it differently just simply because there was no spelling standard. They passed the name on with their best guess of how it 'should' be spelled.

My dad always called me Sis, I don't remember him ever calling me by my name. My older brother called me Sissy when we were small children, and the nickname stuck for dad. I was Sis for life when he called me.

We spent that last Father's day quietly. Dad was pretty ill and was unable to eat much of anything.

I miss talking with him and hearing his quick wit. Whenever he talked with his grandson Josh he always had some bit of a quote or a poem he would recite off the top of his head. It always came out of no where and gave us all a laugh. I miss that wit more than can be guessed. He loved his grandchildren a lot. He loved hearing from Jenn in Oklahoma as she went through school, and was very proud of her when she graduated college. That was his last big trip anywhere, his health was failing.

Happy Father's Day, Dad. I hope you and the others that have gone before continue to watch over us. I love you.


  1. Leslie, I like the way you talk about your dad's wit that always came out of nowhere, with a quote or a poem. He sounds like a quiet and loving person. You describe him in his decline, with esophageal cancer, but I'll bet when you were a child he was fun to be with and go on trips with. Thank you for writing of him so fondly.

    1. Thanks for stopping, Mariann. Yes, he was a quiet guy, and dearly missed.

      Thanks again for stopping by.


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