This is what I would have said if I had the fortitude yesterday at my father's service.
Words seem insufficient to define my father. Some would call him a Marine, but I never really knew him in that role. I was too young to know the man in the uniform. I knew the man who was a dad, and then a grandfather to my children. I knew a man who never met a person he couldn't talk to, who smiled at everyone. I knew a man who hadn't ever faced a situation that he could not conquer. Failure was never an option for him. Fear never kept him from doing anything. I knew a man who loved deeply on the inside, but who was stoic on the outside. If you knew him, you liked him or respected him. There are people who become more perfect after death; Dad is not one of those. He was as we all described him. We need not embellish our memories of him.
His smile, his teasing, his wonderful zeal for life will be missed. We all have a task before us. We must attempt to imitate my father. We must try to live life as well as he lived his.