Feeling Temporary About Myself: A Fathers’ Day Story in Three Objects

Willy Loman, the Salesman of Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman, was the flawed son of a father who abandoned him. His father’s absence made him feel, as he put it, “kind of temporary about myself,” throughout the remainder of his life. This won’t be a lecture about Willy Loman, however: Willy is just one in a long line of sons abandoned by their fathers, a line going back at least as far as Ishmael, Abraham’s oldest son. I’m in line, too. A couple of years ago I talked about my own experience with an absent father: how I last saw him when I was twelve and a half, and how I learned of his death more than 30 years later. On this Fathers’ Day, 2019, I’ll revisit the same subject, this time with the help of three exhibits marked for identification and submitted for your consideration.

WALLACE R. HOGGATT recently retired after close to 23 years of service as Judge of the Superior Court. He lives in Sierra Vista with his family and has been a member of this congregation since 2008.

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