Letter to my dad
I can’t begin to believe to think what our family is going to do without you in our everyday lives. This pain has been unbearable since Friday morning when you were taken from us way to soon. I know that you were not ready to go; you were ready for the next part of your life with your beautiful wife that loves you forever and took care of your everyday. Your family loves you so much and needs your advice and direction and your friends need you as well. When you and mom went to Florida to get away, we never stopped calling. You guys wanted to get away and enjoy some time together, but my brothers and I seemed to always call and bother you guys. We needed you to help us answer questions with the business or just our everyday lives. Usually it was bad news and you would say, “if you are always going to call with bad news then stop calling.” If we would ask you a question and you didn’t know the answer, you would always say, “Can you give me a second to think this out?” You always had come back with an answer. As you would say, “99.9% of the time I am right.” If you decided not to take his advice then usually it didn’t work out in your favor. “I told you, if you would of just listened.” He really liked knowing that he was right 99.9% of the time. We always called him to give us his opinion just to make sure we were doing it right. Nobody could ever get away with anything. He was the sheriff our neighborhood. Ray and I would be working at the house and we would see his truck come down the road and we would say “the sheriff is here.” My brothers and I got busted in just about everything we tried to hide. He was the guy who just stopped in…you didn’t need a call before he came. Ray and I will miss seeing your truck or your ranger pull into the driveway to visit us. Sometimes you stay for a long time and others it was just for a few minutes. You were always there to help me with my house. We have come a long way on the house…but not without your help. We promise we will get rid of that big mountain of dirt in our front yard and get the pond done very soon. That pile of dirt seemed to really bother him because there were so many people talking about it. Mom and I told him to quit worrying about it. You probably won’t believe this but my dad would even come to my house to water my flowers and spray my weeds. He always watered my mom’s flowers. I know that I am not the only one he stopped in on. I think the neighborhood knows what I am talking about.
Growing up with 3 brothers was definitely not the easiest task. My mom and dad tried to dress me up in dresses and bought me Barbies and baby dolls but I was a tomboy and just wanted to ride my 3-wheeler with my brothers. My brothers and I each had our own. I wanted to play in the sandbox (and this was not a small sandbox…my dad would have a dump truck load of sand delivered). One thing my dad was proud of was that I wrestled in Elementary School. After watching my 2 older brother’s wrestle I asked my dad if I could too. So, the next open tournament he signed me up. Even though I was a girl I was beating the boys. My dad and my brothers were my coaches….Shawn also was the camera man. We noticed I started having forfeits because they didn’t want to wrestle a girl. So, my dad said he would fix that problem. My new name on the bracket was Kris Cutter…now they had to wrestle me. He loved it when I made the boys cry. When I finally took first place at a tournament he took me to my first concert…Phil Collins. He hated to see me or my brothers losing a match. I remember that I was losing a match when he got mad and walk out…I turned around and ended up pinning the kid. I never let him live that one down. He always did that to my brothers….he just couldn’t stand to watch of lose. There was something about dad being at the matches or games that made us push on even harder. We used to get upset at you when you didn’t come, but over the last few years we have all grown to understand why you weren’t….because you were always working. But, it did allow mom to be at every game. He always would ask how the game went when he saw you or secretly he was checking the paper to see how we did. His pep talk before a game or match was “you better kick ass and take names.”
As most of you know my parents started Cutter Oil Company nearly 30 years ago. If you have ever worked in the oil field then you know that it takes a lot of hard work and many long hours and dedication. It was hard to understand as kids why he was gone before the sun came up and came home after the sun was down….there was times he just slept at the wells. I know I didn’t really understand this business until about 4 years ago when I began working. Some people do not understand why my family works so much but that’s just want we like to do. My Grandpa Cutter didn’t teach my dad to be lazy, so that’s what my dad was teaching us…how to work. When we decided to start drilling again, we knew that is was going to take all of us kids to help and also a few more. I have to give CJ a lot of credit for bringing me back to Ohio. He wanted to drill so bad but he knew he couldn’t do it alone. All of us kids took our own little role in this company along with mom and dad. We needed the brains behind all of this. I’m so glad I do work with my family because it has allowed me to see my parents almost every day. When one of us would get stressed out, he would say, “I’ve been there, I know.”
My dad had decided he was going to buy a boat to keep up at Lake Erie. Every summer we spent almost every weekend at the Lake. My mom would load us kids in the van and head to Cleveland to meet my dad. This is what started our love for boating and being on the water. We didn’t have a big boat but somehow we how fit 10-15 people. We had many great memories from the boat and my parents had met some lifelong friends. We were unable to travel very much so our vacations consisted of going to see my grandparents in Florida. We would pack the coolers and we piled in the mini van and headed for Florida. CJ took the whole back seat, Josh was in his car seat and Shawn was in the middle row…so that left me on the floor. My dad was always close to his parents and he especially admired his father. I used to sit for hours with my grandfather and listened to his story and sometimes he even told me the stuff he probably shouldn’t. I would tell my dad I couldn’t wait for that same relationship to happen when I have kids.
A little over 10 years ago, my parents bought their condo and the 38 special Baja in Florida. The boat just had to be pink and black. The 1st time I ever went down I couldn’t believe how awesome it was. Dad and Mom loved it in Ft. Myers. They were so excited to take us on our first boat ride. Nothing compares to boating in southwest Florida. It was Paradise for us. My dad is always the boat captain. Just the other weekend we spent together in Florida, I kept calling him a boat hog….he didn’t share the captain role very well. He tried to teach me how to dock the boat. He would tell Ray and I that we needed to watch him first. If you have ever docked a boat, you don’t just learn by watching. He finally just let Ray and I dock the boat over and over again. One of his friends even called him and asked why was that pink boat going in circles in the marina. My parents loved their speedboat and they loved watching the sunsets. We watched the sunsets from the boat, the condo, and at the hotel next door. Whenever he was in Florida his mood just changed. It was like he didn’t have a worry in the world. We laughed at him because he was a social butterfly down at the club. My parents made so many great friends there. They had something to do every night when they were there. I am so glad Ray and I went to Florida when you guys were just down. We boated so much that weekend. It was awesome dad! For a while we used to get a rental car when we went down but dad was never easy on the cars. My parents had picked Shawn and I up at Ft. Myers Beach, which they were late. They had told us they were on their way but they hadn’t even left their friends house. He thought it was funny because he said that us kids used to always make them wait. Once he finally picked us up, the music was blaring in the car and my parents were having a great time. We were headed back to the condo when my dad decides to take this big Lincoln car beachn. We were doing donuts on the beach. We laughed so hard!!!
I won’t forget last weekend when you, mom, Ray and I danced the night away. I remember telling you and mom that I have the best parents and that I loved you both. I always enjoyed spending time with you whether it was coming to my house, boating, or just working. It’s pretty amazing how much fun I had with my parents.
Over the past few years my dad and I’s relationship has been so close. I couldn’t have asked to have spent it any other way. I just wish I could continue that time with you. Dad I don’t know what I am going to do without you in my life. I am going to miss hearing you tell people, “she looks like her mom but she asks like me.” Most of the time you enjoyed that fact that I acted so much like you, other than the times when we were disagreeing. I know that I will always be your little girl…I’m definitely a daddy’s girl. I am going to miss getting those hugs from you. I remember you giving me a hug when I was crying, and you said “sis quit crying or you are going to make me cry.” Lately, I haven’t been able to do that for you. I hope you know that you meant the world to me and that I loved you so much. I wish I just we had more time. We didn’t get the chance to do what a dad and their daughter are supposed to do. It has been taken from us. We have talked about my wedding day for so long. You were supposed to walk me down the aisle on June 18, 2011 and we were supposed to have our daddy/daughter dance. We have already song picked out. I just don’t know how I am going to it without you dad. This day is just not for Ray and I but it was our day too. You didn’t even get to see my dress. I wish I would of showed you but you wanted to wait for that day. I know you weren’t ready to go because you wouldn’t of made me go through my special day without you. I know you loved Ray and knew that he was a great guy. You were so happy to have a such a perfect son in law…you always said “he is a Gemini just like me.” We will both miss you on our wedding day. I wanted our kids to ride in the tractors with you. I always felt so lucky that you and mom would be such a big part in their lives. I know you couldn’t wait for that day either. I want you to know dad that I will walk down that aisle for you (even though it will be the hardest thing I will ever do) and I will never stop telling my kids someday how great their papa was. Our family and close friends will continue to keep farming for you because we know you would want us too. We already know that we won’t do it has good as you and our rows will not be straight. But, we know you will be proud of us because you never thought we would farm. I know you will be looking down on us with that smile. We will stay a very close family just for you because that is what you always wanted….you didn’t want us to fight. We will always take care of mom and we will always stick together. We will continue to do what you want us to do….I can’t say this is going to be easy. Our family will not be the same. Each one of us kids had our own relationship with you dad. You and mom are so perfect together…you kept our family together.
You have 3 great sons that in so many ways they are just like you. One might resemble you, one might have been named after you, one might have your eyes and your nose, but they are all very hard working, smart and successful boys….and I know they love and miss you just the way I do.
I won’t forget last weekend when you, mom, Ray and I danced the night away. I remember telling you and mom that I have the best parents and that I loved you guys so much. I miss you so much now and I will miss you forever. I will always be your little girl and I will make sure I stay up on your pedistool. This family will continue to make you proud and continue to share your memories. I would like to leave you with a picture of me in my wedding dress, a bout near that you would of wore on my wedding day and I would like to play our father/daughter song that we had already picked out. Daddy I will love and miss you forever.
Your little girl