The gentleman pictured here in this drawing is my Grandpa Rood. This past week, he passed away while visiting Corpus Christi, TX.
My Grandpa was a great man. A family patriarch. A working class hero. He loved and lived farming. He was involved in agriculture his entire life, right through the end.
When I was a kid, I used to help he and my dad move and sort hogs. Whenever a quick piglet would get loose and run, I'd be the one to chase it. I'd catch it a lot of times, but also I'm sure I looked plenty spastic and freaky as I slid around on the floor of the hog house, running after tiny pigs. I'm sure he'd be laughing inside, but to me he'd always say "Phillip, I'm glad you're here. I'm not quick like you. You're good at catchin' 'em 'n' bein' quick like they are." Then he'd give me a soda or some mad money when we were done.
He was one of my first bosses, he was someone who taught me the importance and respect that is due the American family farmer, he was a tough guy, he was a stubborn man, and he could be a straight-up difficult man, but he was a man who loved his family, who worked hard for them, and felt blessed by them.
Rest In Piece, Grandpa. We all love you and will miss you very much.
4 Generations of Rood Guys at Fort Myers Beach, FL in February 2007