In loving memory of our dad, Bob Skierski
March 13, 1949 - March 10, 2014
Written by Jennifer Rodgers and Mark and Sean Skierski
As read by Jennifer Rodgers on March 13, 2014
Happy 65th Birthday Dad. We love you.
Courage is the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, pain, and adversity. This was the theme I had chosen for my dad's CaringBridge website because since August, he was the epitome of this definition.
We are very grateful for the medical team that took care of my dad the last 7 months. The doctors and nurses at both Jefferson Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners provided Bob with outstanding care by treating him with compassion throughout all of his medical issues.
We are also grateful for all of you who supported us during the 7 months of Bob's hospitalization. Thank you for taking the time to send him a card, stop by one of his many hospital rooms for a visit, chat with him on the phone, post a message to his CaringBridge website, or play Words With Friends. All of this meant so very much to him and definitely brightened his day. Bob knew how much he was loved by each of you.
Words can not begin to express the emptiness we feel in our hearts at this time. Bob always seemed to have the odds stacked against him but always persevered. A poor kid from Port Richmond did pretty damn good to build a rich and fulfilling life for himself and his family. He always provided for us no matter how dire times were. Our dad was hard working, dependable, and supportive; and we strive to be the same in our life every day.
Our Dad was hospitalized for 209 days and our mom had been by his side the entire time making sure that he wasn't afraid or lonely or forgotten and that he was being cared for, thought of, loved and missed. All while working a 9 to 5 job, leaving work to be by his side and spending her weekends with him until visiting hours were over. Both of our parents have shown so much strength, courage, resolve and grace during such a difficult and emotionally trying time that it has been nothing short of inspirational to see such dedication and love that two people can have for one another. Thank you for inspiring all of us to love in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health...We love you both.
When I try to make sense of the last 209 days and all that our dad had to endure, I have come to the conclusion that Bob had more to teach us. The lesson he gave to all of us during this time is how to handle adversity with true grace, humility and fearlessness. He taught us about compassion and how to celebrate life's joys and how to stick together during life's challenges.
In the last two days so many people have said how kind and generous our dad was. A man of few words who enjoyed baseball, reading countless books about World War 2 history, playing shuffleboard on Friday nights with long time friends and drinking Schmidts on ice, Bob loved to spend time with his family. Whether it was playing air guitar at a wedding or building train set ups and playing Army guys with his grandsons, it was his family that he cherished most.
You left us much too soon. You are loved and you will be missed. Dad, you have fought the good fight and now it's time for you to be at rest on this earth and have peace from all of your recent suffering. You are everything a person could ever want their dad to be. Thank you for being such a wonderful husband, father and Grandpop.