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David H., Father This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   At4 a.m he leaves for his hour-long morning jog. From 5:15 to 5:30 he takes my twodogs for a walk around the block. At 6:30 he gets into the shower. At 7:20 heleaves to catch the train to New York City. At 9 p.m. he picks me up from soccerpractice. At 10:30 he gets home. At 11 p.m. he goes to bed.

That's theschedule of my dad's typical day. He, without a doubt, is the most importantperson in my life. Everyone says they have an inspiration; mine is my dad. He hasgiven me a lot of support. Even though I have only been around for 13 years, mydad has been by my side through everything, from my down times to when I am at mybest. But on September 11, 2001, I thought my inspiration was lostforever.

"This is 101 FM. We have just heard that there has been aterrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City."

Thatday my dad was scheduled to have a meeting on the 98th floor of one of the Towersat the exact time the plane hit. Then he was travelling toCalifornia.

Thinking about losing my dad in the World Trade Center almostmade me sick to my stomach. It was such a relief when I finally heard his voice."Hi, honey, it's Daddy. I just wanted to let you know that I am okay andthat I'm in California." At that moment I knew God had sent my dad an angelby cancelling his meeting. I think back to that day as a reminder not to takethings for granted, especially the way that someone can love you.

My dadtold me that from the time he was young he knew he wanted to have a little girl.My mom told me that my dad started to cry when I was born. She said that all thenurses were trying to comfort him, when all she wanted was an Advil and a glassof water.

My dad is a great father, and a great person. When it is time tobe a dad, he is a dad, but when it is time to be a friend, he is the best friend.I know it sounds corny to say that my dad is my best friend, but it is true. Heand I tell each other a lot. He tells me about his projects, and I tell him whatis happening in school, or about any problems I might have.

My dadsays you need to do three things to have a good life: try your hardest ineverything that you do; have respect for everyone and everything; and have goodmanners. As I mature, I find myself thinking Okay, Allie, remember the Hambletonrules. My dad raised three kids by those rules. I remember one marking period insixth grade I had a really tough math teacher. I was trying my best in thatclass, but when report cards came out,

I got a C+. I was so upset. But Ishowed my dad, and he knew that I gave it my best. It was then that I knew my dadalways goes by those rules - even if you don't always succeed, you always have togive it your all.

My dad is an inspiration to me. He will always be therefor me, and I will always be there for him. He will always be my best friend!




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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