Your Family's Heritage: Knowing Your past Can Help Build A Better Future

By Tracy Renee Lee

September 1, 2022

My husband is a retired US Navy Veteran. His career has been filled with amazing experiences. Those experiences have contributed to making him an amazing man. I am sure most military wives feel the same about their husbands, but do their children?

I was talking on the phone with my daughter the other day. Her husband also serves in the US Navy. She was talking about her father and his amazing experiences as a US Navy service member. She asked me to ask him to video himself telling the stories of his career. She said that she wanted them for her children and grandchildren.

My youngest daughter is a genealogist. She researches our family history as well as histories for other families seeking knowledge of their ancestral lineage. She is a historical detective. She finds information that others are unable to find; treasures of knowledge and hidden history. She finds letters and documents and pieces together the lives of the deceased. She brings to life and reignites lost heritage.

That is what my other daughter was asking for when she asked for her father to record his history. She wants to preserve his legacy and make it a living part of her heritage for her children. Because she recognizes his outstanding qualities of honor, integrity, strength, loyalty, love, charity, dedication and faith, she wants his story to be intact as it passes through the future generations of our family. She wants to ensure those virtues remain important and naturally ingrained into her posterity.

As an adult woman and mother to her children, my daughter sees that virtues sometimes slip away as generations pass. She has witnessed the struggle to recover those virtues within the previous generations of our family and she does not want to see that happen to her future descendants.

The world is a tough place to live and a tough place to raise virtuous children. Children are bombarded from all angles to disregard the virtues of society and self and to follow individualism as they interpret it. The problem with that is that children aren’t experienced or mature enough to understand the consequences of adult choices nor the importance of virtues. That is why they are children and have parents to guide, love, and teach them.

One hopes that children have parents who have decent objectives and are mature enough to have given up selfish behaviors and bad decisions. In the funeral profession, my daughter witnesses families who struggle with virtues and families who thrive through virtues. It is a perspective that she is fortunate to see. It has made her an excellent parent who understands the seriousness and failures of lawlessness and carelessness.

My daughter understands that it is easier to build upon a good foundation rather than start from scratch. Therefore, she wants to ensure that her father’s history and virtues are the foundation from which her children launch their lives.

I, like my daughter, am blessed with the tremendous fortune of having a good father. I grew up in the loving embrace of parents who loved the Lord and took the time to teach me the virtues of character and life. I appreciate my parents’ time and effort in teaching me to choose good over evil and incorporate virtue into my life rather than failure and heartache. Their focus was to raise strong, successful, loving, and caring children into virtuous adults. Even when their children may have tried to wander, they remained ever loving and gentle with us. They led us back to where we needed to be through kind nudges and loving directions.

As a parent, I have tried to follow the examples and loving guidance through which my parents tenderly raised me. I have tried to empower my children through the proven path of virtuous living, encouraging them to obtain their potential and serene happiness. Fortunately, before they came along, I married a stalwart man, undaunted by my goals and willing to join my crusade in parenting virtuous children.

My husband has been a good, generous, gentle-hearted, and virtuous father to our children and grandchildren. Our daughters attest to this truth through continual expressions of gratitude and love. My children have been incredibly blessed through him; thankfully, they realize and appreciate their good fortune. His influence has imprinted his virtues into their personalities, ways of life, and eternal souls.

I have passed along my daughter’s request for my husband to record his life’s history for her and his future descendants. I hope he will honor her precious request and provide his enduring legacy to our future family.

My name is Tracy Renee Lee. I am a Certified Grief Counselor (GC-C), Funeral Director (FDIC), published author, syndicated columnist, Podcaster, and founder of the “Mikey Joe Children’s Memorial” and Heaven Sent, Corp. I write books, weekly bereavement articles, Podcasts and Grief BRIEFs related to understanding and coping with grief. I am the American Funeral Director of the Year Runner-Up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award.

It is my life's work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on.

For additional encouragement, please visit my podcast “Deadline” at https://open.spotify.com/show/7MHPy4ctu9OLvdp2JzQsAA or at https://anchor.fm/tracy874 and follow me on Instagram at "Deadline_TracyLee."