March 23,1978 A Life Changing Day!


I have written about a few dates in my life that has forever changed who I am.  This is date, March 23,1979, is a day that made a huge in my, then, young life.  I had just turned 27 years old the month previous and was a young U.S. Air Force Captain flying in the left seat of a Lockheed built C-141 Starlifter out of Travis AFB, CA.  I was, as you have often heard me say, tongue in cheek, “living the dream”!  But at this point in my life I really thought that I was truly “living the dream”!!

The birth of my second son, Jeremy Leon Hammack, on March 23, 1978, was a very joyous occasion!  Because Jeremy was a Cesarean birth, his mother and I picked his birthday from a list of days that the hospital at Travis AFB performed those surgeries.  So it was decided that March 23 was going to be the day.

Reliving, and now writing about, that day stirs up emotions that are as fresh today as they were on the afternoon of March 23, 1978…..32 years ago.  It is quite unexplainable!  The doctor tried to arrange for me to be in the surgery room and had briefed me on what to expect, but at the last minute those plans fell through the cracks.  Now, 32 years later, I think that I am oh so glad that I was not allowed into the surgery room for the Cesarean birth!  I am quite sure that they would have had to pick me up off the floor, ’cause I really can’t stand to see blood, cutting, and all that kind of medical  stuff!!  I honestly admit that I am a WIMP!!!

So now it your birthday, Jeremy.  I am having a very difficult time realizing that you are 32 years old!  I still have these visions in my head ( I am a little bit prejudice) of this blonde hair and blue eyed little boy who was soooo cute and could melt the heart of anyone!  Now you are a man with children of your own!  It is your turn to make a difference in someone’s live, Cole and Hannah specifically!

I will admit that our relationship has hit many potholes during this life’s journey, been to the very edge of the cliff during these 32 years, but through it all we somehow have been able to rebuild the relationship.  I will also admit to you that I have had many shortcomings as a parent, and at times my learning curve was monumentally steep.  There are times I know that you thought that I have failed you miserably, and I did!  Those failures weren’t from a lack of effort, however.

Jeremy, I want you to know that I love you from the bottom of my heart.  I know that things have not always been the way that you thought or wanted them to be, but that is life.  Sometimes our expectations far exceed the reality of results.  Remember what I have always told you, “Life is a journey, not a guided tour!”  Life is what you make of it!  Additionally, it not what you take with you when you leave this Earth, it is what you leave here when your are gone!

Now that you have two young children you will see just how difficult, at times, it is to be a father.  You also have the opportunity to correct some of the things that I failed at in fatherhood, now that you have Cole and Hannah.

So, my son, enjoy your birthday!  Relish in the thought that this day will never come around again and make your 32nd birthday a day that you will always remember. 

But most importantly remember that your dad loves you unconditionally, no matter what!

Be a positive force in the lives of Cole and Hannah.  Always let them know that you love them unconditionally!!  It will pay dividends in the end!


2 Replies to “March 23,1978 A Life Changing Day!”

  1. I love reading your comment of your lifes journey. Leon , I so wish that you Hammack boys could come to the Hammock/ Crownover reunion, in June. I think that we could put up,on a nail or something.

  2. I love reading your comment of your lifes journey. Leon , I so wish that you Hammack boys could come to the Hammock/ Crownover reunion, in June. I think that we could put up,on a nail or something.

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