Dwight Dickinson .com

A Diplomat, a Gentleman, a Father

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This is a web site about my dad. The photo at right was taken in 1976 when he was 60. It looks so much like him that it is hard to believe when I see it that he is no longer with us. In 2012, I built a web site about my mom, thinking it would be a nice way to honor her, to remember her, and to thank her for all that she did for me over the years as well as a good way to share some of her creative work with others who may be interested.
It is:

So after I finished my mom's web site, I decided to make one for my dad. It feels a little odd giving them two separate sites because they were married and together forever. But he was a diplomat, and she was an artist. They were two very individual and unique people. I just don't want to give the impression that they led separate lives. They were very much a couple.

To start with, this web site has only one photo and one page. If I had to choose just one thing to represent who my father was, it would be the letter below. It was a letter he typed on November 25, 1963 to send to his two sons. It was just a couple of days after the assassination of JFK. It was an emotional time for the nation. My dad was stationed to the U.S. Mission to the U.N. at that time. Though he had not known JFK personally, they had graduated together from Harvard in the same year, and had served together in the Navy during WWII in the Pacific theater. It is helpful to remember that on November 25, 1963, little was known about who shot JFK. In my dad's thinking, it likely had something to do with the president's stand against racism in the South.
Dear Spencer and Philip,

The events of the last three days impel me to write to you both, to repeat to you some things I have said before, but which I believe I should say to you once again.

To begin, I want you both to know that I am very proud of you and that nothing I have to say implies the slightest dissatisfaction with either of you. Still, you are not yet completely formed and I have the responsibility of sharing with you some of my thoughts and beliefs before I release you completely.

I have always wanted above all else that you be upright and honest, since I firmly believe that your happiness in life will be directly proportionate to your self-respect. And your chances of having this precious self-respect, which must not be confused with conceit or arrogance, will be the greater if you resolve never to take unfair advantage of another human being, never to seek material success at the expense of others.

I wish, of course, that you will be kind and considerate, warm, friendly, and loving, but there is another thing, related to these, and that is tolerance. You have seen in these last days, as all Americans have seen, the cruel results of bigotry. I
implore you to think deeply on this, while the memory is fresh, and to resolve never to judge a man on the basis of his race, religion, or color, but on your own estimation of his true worth. In politics, as in other things, I hope you will forego the extremes, of left or right, since I believe that neither can be
good for the great majority that lies between.

If you will treat all men with the dignity that they deserve, if you will be both manly and affectionate, as you are, then you will find happiness on this earth. That is my most earnest wish.

With all my love,

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