Many of us take knowing our fathers for granted.  For some he was the so-called “man of the house,” taking on his role with a sense of duty and obligation that can only be understood as an adult.  Still others of us gladly don’t know our fathers.  We get passed down stories of abuse, or alcoholism, or abandonment about a man that exists only in distant memories.

Then there are the fathers, Daddies really, that break the mold.  They are the ones that have such a profound effect on their children that they are thanked at awards ceremonies, cited in the dedications of books, sang about in touching songs, and inspiring to other dads.  These guys raise, or help to raise, great kids simply by tapping into their paternal instincts.  First Sgt. Charles Monroe King is one of those special dads.  What sets him apart is that he crammed a lifetime of advice for his son into a 200 page journal that he wrote while serving this country in Kuwait and up to his final assignment in Iraq.  First Sgt. King died in combat on October 14, 2006, but not before finishing his journal and sending it to his fiance for safekeeping.  His son will have the gift of his dad’s wisdom, bravery, and artistry (yes he was an artist too) to guide him throughout his life. 

Click here to read the New York Times article by Dana Canedy, First Sgt. King’s fiance and the mother of his son, where she tells the story of the priceless journal.