To celebrate his father’s 60th birthday Caleb Wilde recently looked back to reflect on the influence his father, Bill Wilde, has had on his life.
Author of the popular “Confessions of a Funeral Director” blog, and the sixth generation funeral director of the Parkesburg based Wilde Funeral Home, he talked about twelve things his father taught him about being a funeral director in a heartfelt post on his page.
Leading by example, making sure he is comfortable with being himself, and showing respect to his elders are only some of the things Caleb credits his father with instilling in him. But maybe most importantly, it is the gift of presence that influenced his life the most.
“The greatest gift my dad ever game me was his time,” writes Caleb. “As a funeral director and a new father, I realize how hard it was for him to make time for me. He could have worked harder, made more money and given me cooler things, better cars, etc. Instead, he worked less, made less money and gave me himself.”
In his professional life, Bill showed Caleb that good service takes precedence over money, and that listening to the stories people are sharing with him can only enrich his life.
“While others pigeon hole certain groups that are “different,” I listen to their story,” remarks Caleb.“I want to hear their story because I’ve always seen my dad be more interested in people than kowtowing to the interests of his tribe.”
It is no wonder, then, that Caleb finishes his tribute to his father with a wish that his own son will consider himself as lucky to have such a father and feel the same respect that he does for his own.
You can find Caleb’s TEDxTalk on “Embracing Death” below.