My dad is a self-made man. He is the epitome of, “work overcomes all obstacles.”

After retiring from his very profitable business nearly 20 years ago, he started another small enterprise and is currently building a cabin (by himself) for our family.

My dad is 72 years young. When I think about my father, I am amazed at the wonderful legacy he is leaving for his family. You see, my dad was illiterate until 65 years of age. He was raised in the mountains of Utah and didn’t regularly see the inside of a school until 9th grade. He struggled through and graduated from high school as a prized athlete but a poor student - a struggling reader.

Somehow we never knew. I remember being frustrated with my dad because he wouldn’t read to us or help us with our homework. I did not know the shame that he carried. In fact, I never knew until that day, seven years ago, when my dad announced that he was learning to read at an adult literacy program held at the local applied technology school. After learning to read, he stayed on for a while as a volunteer paying it forward.

I love my dad. I love my dad’s hands. They are rough, chapped, calloused, and scarred. They are the hands of a man who knows the value of work, courage, and persistence. They are the hands that hold the book, he reads to his grandchildren.


Adults can learn to read with Reading Horizons At Home reading program, learn more!