Yesterday marked the 2nd birthday that my Dad would’ve had since his passing in 2010, he would’ve been 87. To my Mom, he was “Sweetie” to so many others, he was “Jack” or “Mr. Jackson.” To me, he was Tick Tick. I called him that because he used to wear a pocket watch and would hold it up to my ear and say “Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick!…” When I learned to speak, he became “Tick Tick!” from then on and forever.
He was so many things, and so much more…
Husband – A very good husband to my Mom. I hope that I can be as good of a husband if I get married again some day.
Father – To me and my siblings. My Mom and Tick Tick married in 1969, So we were lucky enough to have both Tick Tick and Daddy, Willie Jenkins, in our lives. Two incredibly great men and role models.
Cook – Tick Tick cooked very well, I guess he learned to cook in the Navy. He told me that he used to cook for the officers on the ship. I’ll bet they enjoyed his food as much as we did. My favorites of his included broiled steaks, fried fish, especially catfish, and sweet potato pies. And I can’t forget his barbecue sauce, which he made with beer.
HandyMan – One year, he remodeled the bathroom which included new lighting, bathtub & enclosure, toilet, sink and floor. It was huge project and it was done well. He always had a great set of tools, which I raided from time to time for my bike, and later on, car projects.
Driver – Wow, I have so many wonderful memories around Tick Tick & driving and busses. He was a bus driver for DSR (Detroit Street Railways) and later D-DOT (Detroit Depart of Transportation) My earliest cool memories involve the couple of times i got to go to work with him and ride along on his route, some days coming home from school (grade) and seeing a bus parked in front of the house! (he’d be home on his break), driving on trips (car and bus) to countless destinations, Cedar Point, Niagara Falls, Toronto, Atlantic City, King’s Island, Mackinaw, etc. Such good times, he was an expert driver and loved to travel. When we were’t going places on the bus, we were traveling by car. I’d been to most of the continental states by the time I started high school.
Photographer – Tick Tick always had a camera, video & still. He was constantly shooting pictures and video or tips, holidays and family get together, vacations, church functions, pretty much everything. He really loved to shoot and edit video. I kind of dabbled with still photography in the early digital days and even a little bit with film, but I didn’t get the photo bug until about 2007. By then I began to understand and relate to his passion for the art. I hope that he is looking down and approves of my efforts.
Church – Tick Tick was very active in our church, he spent much of his time taking care of the business of the church from starting the Credit Union and Travel Club, to being head of the Trustee Board, participating on the Joint Board, to making sure that the busses and vans were operational, to making sure that the money was counted on Sundays and at the bank on Mondays. Thanks to him and my Mom, who was church clerk by the way, I got to see and understand the inner workings of the church from the business side as well as the spiritual side.
These are just a few of the many facets of Tick Tick. My Dad. I am so blessed and fortunate to have had him and so many other great people in my life.
Well, this IS a photo blog post, and I am a photographer, so I’ll also include some of my images too…
At the end of last year, I visited a battleship, the U.S.S .IOWA,(The Big Stick) that’s here in the Bay Area for restoration before going to museum duty in Southern California. While visiting this ship, I couldn’t help but think about Tick Tick and the time he spent in harms way.
At Tick Tick’s funeral, I was awed and filled with such pride that the Navy would send 3 Seaman out to present the flag to my Mom. It was an unexpected and proud moment.
I also captured some video of the flag presentation which I’ve tried to cleanup a little bit, you can see it at the following link: http://youtu.be/VqjCUOshsWU
When I was home in Detroit last Christmas, my Mom and I visited Tick Tick and I got a chance to see the headstone at his grave. It is the same type of grave stone that fallen warriors have in military memorial cemeteries. I like the look and I was happy to get some great hero style shots on a cold, clear Michigan afternoon..
And so, there it is, my chance to pay tribute to a Tick Tick on his birthday and to remember and laugh and cry a little bit in celebration of his life.