My Dad’s Confession

I posted this little story on my other blog nine years ago and thought I would include it on my new website, too. It was one of my Dad’s favorite stories. Mine, too.

Crow Canyon Journal

My Dad moved to St. Emydius parish in San Francisco when he was 8 years old and he lived with his sister and parents there on Westwood Drive until he and Mom married in 1936. Dad was very friendly with the priests of St. Emydius during the 30s, especially Father (later Monsignor) Leo Powleson, and the two shared a great interest in college football and professional baseball. In those days Catholics used to go to confession every week or so and Dad would often try to disguise his voice so the priest wouldn’t recognize him. One Saturday afternoon Dad felt pretty smug with his fake voice as he exited the confessional and began to kneel at a nearby pew to say his three Hail Marys when he felt a tap on his shoulder. It was Father Powleson! “Hey Don,” he whispered, “What’s the score of the Notre Dame game?”

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Our Golden Gate

I joined the U.S. Army Reserves when I was 17 and every Monday night for the next six years I traveled to Crissy Field in the Presidio of San Francisco near the Golden Gate Bridge to attend a Reserve meeting. Well, the Army left the Presidio in 1994 and Crissy Field was restored by the National Parks Service and is now part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

The tidal marsh at Crissy Field with the Golden Gate Bridge and the Marin Headlands in the background.

A few years ago I drove across the Bay for a Crissy Field get-together with three of my siblings who still live on the west side of the Bay. In fact, Jim and Joan still live in San Francisco while Betty resides in nearby Millbrae.

My West Bay siblings at Crissy Field.

Our youngest sister Marie wasn’t available that day because she lives in Alaska. Most years she comes down once or twice but we haven’t seen her in person this year because of the Covid-19 pandemic. We all still see each other virtually via monthly Zoom sessions, though.

I’m sure glad the Army left the Presidio. Now we have a beautiful urban National Park!

My Dad’s Last Words

I posted this on my other blog in 2010.

Crow Canyon Journal

During the parade and celebration today (in case you haven’t heard, the Giants won the World Series!) I thought of my Dad.  Don Dwyer was a die-hard Giants fan for 42 years but he died in 2000, ten years too early to ever witness a world championship.

Dad loved baseball. In his youth he read all of the Ralph Henry Barbour books about Baseball Joe and when I turned ten he gave them to me and I read them, too. For the first 48 years of his life my Dad was a Seals fan. His father took him to Recreation Park to see his first Seals game when he was eight years old.  Pretty soon he was going to a game just about every Saturday. And when the Seals were away he would go and watch the Mission Reds play.

He used to reminisce about the times when his Uncle…

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