Fond memories of a wise dad

(This article was published by Mariambi in a local Newspaper in USA, Camillus Herald Amerian, on Sunday, June 18, 1995)

I don’t know whether any other country in the world has a day set aside as Father’s Day or Mother’s Day other than the United States. That was something that intrigued me when I emigrated from India, where there is only a day set aside as Children’s Day - to make people aware of the many neglected children.

This Father’s Day I want to pay tribute to my father, Abdul Majeed Marikar. Though he never came to this country, he had many ties to it. Our family ties to United States started when my grandfather, in the 1930’s became the first businessman in India to be a dealer for Ford cars and trucks and the Eastman Kodak Company. My father grew up learning about and loving the United States and its people. It was an affection that lasted his life.

Our home in southwestern India was haven for Peace Crops volunteers, and my father was like a father away from home for them and to many other young people. Nobody who came to our house ever left empty handed. because of father’s generosity. In addition to his own eight children, he always had room for someone else’s child to stay in our home and go to school.

Education was very important to dad. He believed that a country’s strength lay in the hands of its educated citizens. Every now and then, I come across a doctor or engineer from India, in this country, who benefited from my father’s generosity. What made my father a very special dad for us was that, to this day, each of us thinks that he or she was his favorite son or daughter. He loved us, trusted us and gave us the freedom which none of your peers enjoyed. The only condition was a responsibility, which we owed to ourselves. That was if you are not proud of talking or thinking about something that should deter you from doing it, whatever the temptation.

My father was a wealthy man who believed in sharing his knowledge and money with others. He enjoyed traveling, and I still wonder how he managed to travel with all of us. He took the time to show us the sights and to explain to each of us.

He also taught us to be adaptable and not demanding. This trait, I would say, has stood all of us in good stead in our different walks of life. My father believed in kindness and consideration and always said, ”These qualities begin at home, but shouldn’t end there”.

My father made many people’s dreams come true, but he always regretted that he had to give up college after two years to take over my grandfather’s business. He wasn’t cut out to be a businessman. He always dreamed of being a judge. In a way this dream was fulfilled because people in our town, who loved and trusted him, brought their problems to him instead of going to court, and most of them my dad resolved amicably.

He was actually involved in all community activities. He was sought by universities and industries to share his wisdom and knowledge on a variety of topics.

When he passed away, he left his children with his values plus a professional education. His vast collection of rare books and magazines went to universities to benefit others beyond the family ( a practice he always had followed).

I remember and admire him for the unconditional love he had for his own family and for others.  I consider him as a true citizen of the world.

Published by the Herald  company
Post offi Box 4915
Clinton square, Syracuse, N.Y. 13221

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