Surprise, Dad! It's me, Cara

June 15, 2014 

Terry Mackin, what a man. Am I right? Known and loved by many, Terry would be quick to give anyone the shirt off his back and also be just as fast to make a joke at their expense once they put it on.

He truly is one of kind. To you he may be "Mack" "Meat" or "Red" but I am one of the lucky ones, because to me he is "Terrbear," "Big Show" and most importantly, Dad.

Thanks to my dad I have a greater understanding for music and sports. The first song lyrics Dad taught me when I was growing up was "Twist and Shout" by The Beatles. It is still one of our favorites.

My dad also taught me how to play baseball. We spent hours out in the front yard playing catch. By the way Dad, while I'm at it, I am happy we are finally at the stage where we can laugh about the time I threw the ball way over your head and put a big ol' dent in your brand new Honda Pilot. Good times, right?

Everything I am, I owe to my father. Literally. I am a spitting image of the man. Some of the greatest compliments I have received are being told I remind someone of my dad. Yet these red curls and freckles are not the only blessings from him.

He has given me various life tips. For example:

* Cold hot dogs make for great fishing bait.

* As long as you move your arms, you can consider yourself a dancer.

* It's OK to put Nutella on everything because it's "healthy." My dad has given me a life of knowledge, laughter and adventures. I will forever be indebted for how well he and my mom (Susan) have raised me.

So, here's to you, Dad!

Thanks for always being my No. 1 fan and only getting "kind of mad" when Corey and I bring home random pets to add to the Mackin family, including a pit bull mix named Bud, a rabbit, a 25-pound cat named Chance and countless turtles.

The four greatest things you have taught me in life are:

1. Bruce is Boss.

2. If your stomach is upset, there is no greater cure than vanilla ice cream.

3. To never give up.

And, last but not least: 4. Remember to laugh at yourself.

So, sl(*135*)inte*, Dad! Happy Fathers Day!

You've been an outstanding friend and even better father. I look forward for the memories yet to come. I hope you have a great day. Love you always!

From your favorite daughter.

Cara Mackin, 20, of Belleville, is a teacher assistant at St. Henry's creative learning center and is studying special education at SIUE. Her brother Corey, 22, of Belleville, attends Ranken Technical College.

* Sl(*135*)inte (SLAHN-chuh), meaning health, is used commonly in an Irish toast.

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