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Hello everyone. I hope your spring is going well. 

It was a tough past month for me as I underwent my second total knee replacement surgery on March 14. As this new issue of the McCarty Metro comes out, I am still off my normal 9-5 job, but I am working hard to get back walking without the need for a walker and/or cane. I want to thank all of my Metro family and everyone who sent me an email or text or call with their well wishes. A very special thank you to my wife Margaret who loved me and took care of me during this entire process. Love you honey!

Thank you to all who came to the 'Toast to Jerry' on March 2. Over 150 family and friends came out to Danny J's in Utica to celebrate the life of Jerry McCarty. It was an awesome night with many great tributes and some karaoke.

The Metro is changing quite a bit now. Jerry wrote 5 different pages, and those are now gone. Thank you to those who stepped up this month to add contributions to the Metro. This website is very much a team effort, and I appreciate those submissions as I really was not able to work on this due to the medications and physical limitations for several weeks post op. A very big thank you to Mike on this issue.

Iam looking forward to the 8th annual McCarty Metro film contest which will take place from May 12-19. I hope you all consider making a film this year. If you want to get a little bit of a 'heads up' on the competition, here is some information before the the specific rules come out on May 18.

With summer on the doorstep, it also means travel time. Remember, if you have any vacation plans, submit some of your good times you had with a quick article and pictures for the Metro. Margaret and I are preparing for a trip to the Grand Hotel on beautiful Mackinac Island in May, and the two of us are also looking forward to our annual trip out to Oregon, along with some other trips sprinkled in for good measure. Of course there will be full reports and pictures right here in upcoming editions of the McCarty Metro.

My Final Thought I wish to leave you with is I have posted before and is about Father's day. Please remember just how special your Dad has been in your life. Give love and thanks to your Father for all the love he gave and all the sacrifices he paid to help shape the person you are today on his special day. Enjoy...

"One night a father overheard his son pray: Dear God, Make me the kind of man my Daddy is. Later that night, the Father prayed, Dear God, Make me the kind of man my son wants me to be."

Several years ago in the month of June, I just happened to be in the card shop looking for a birthday card, when another man struck up a conversation.

"What are you giving your father this year?" he asked me.

"My father died in 1991," I said.

Obviously embarrassed, he said, "Oh, I'm sorry. I never thought to ask." Then without hesitation he continued, "It's just that I always have a hard time trying to find something for my father. It's not that he has everything, but whatever you give him always ends up in a drawer unused. I have this great fear that when he dies I'm going to find all my gifts for him still in the original packaging."

"I know exactly how you feel," I answered. "Each Father's Day, my wife and I decided to take him and mom out to dinner and give him a gift card to whatever store he shopped. It was really not very personal, but he liked it. He got to choose what he wanted."

"No matter what we give him, he always says the same thing, 'Oh, that's nice. You're wasting your money!'" he said, laughing. "Then he sets it aside."

"Well, it's easy for me now. I just sing for him," I told him.

"But I thought you said he had passed."

"Yes, but he's still very much alive in me," I replied. "I sing because he always enjoyed singing with my mom as she played piano, and he always loved hearing my mom sing. I grew up on great music. I'm just paying him back."

"Where do you sing for him?"

"At the cemetery, of course."

"Okay..." He seemed skeptical.

"Every Father's Day I visit the cemetery. Because his grave is fairly close to the road, I am able to pull up next to it. I open my car door, pop in my own CD I recorded and stand over his grave and sing."

"What do you sing?" he asked.

"Too Ra Loo Ra. It was an old Bing Crosby hit and was my Dad's favorite. It always brought tears to his eyes." "Then what?"

"Then I get back in my car and go home."

"Don't you feel foolish?" he asked. "I mean there must be other people around. Don't they look at you funny?"

"To tell you the truth I never pay attention to anyone else. Yes, I see them there, but this is my gift for my father. They bring flowers. I sing."

"Well," he objected, "I can't sing."

"You don't have to," I told him. "While you still have your father with you, give him your time. Sit with him. Talk to him while you can. Ask him questions about his youth, when he met your mother, his first job. What was his biggest dream? Do you know any of this?"

He thought for a moment, ran his fingers up and down the greeting cards in front of him and softly said, "No. I don't."

"There will come a time when you wish you had asked," I said.

"Come to think of it, I don't even know his favorite song," he said.

"Find out and buy it for him. Better yet, sing it with him. That, my friend, will be the greatest gift you'll ever give him. Then on that day when all the shirts and ties are found in his drawer unopened, you'll still have something to give him. If a stranger stops you in a card store and asks, you can say, 'I sing for my father.'"

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Here's to celebrating the greatest man in the world... Your Dad! Cheers!

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