Through A Father's Eyes


When I saw my son Lincoln for the very first time, I knew my life had changed. There was something about this small, vulnerable human being that made me want to protect, teach, and love him all at the same time. His dark blue eyes stared at me inquisitively.

He hadn’t made a peep since he entered the world. His mother was being cared for in her hospital bed not far from her son and me. Her task had been hard and exhausting lasting, three days. She looked beautiful. I watched her as a sense of pride and relief washed over her. I looked back down at my son. The nurses had been measuring his height, checking his lungs, heart rate, etc. He gave me a subtle smirk as he peered into my eyes. It was at this moment I became aware of the array of roles I would play throughout my son and my time together on earth.

My father was a diesel mechanic and a glorified man’s man. He seemed to run from the time he got up in the morning, to the moment he would lay down. Growing up he would wake up at 4:00 a.m. and make his morning commute to Lincoln, Nebraska, where he eventually would manage a freight fleet at Cornhusker International. We lived in a beautiful two-story colonial type house that he had stripped down and rebuilt to my mother’s and his liking. It was near a small town called Bennet, about 30 miles east of Lincoln.

He would get home right at dinner every night. After we ate, he would invest the time that remained in the day fixing a bike, repairing the family cruiser, listening to a story, and settling domestic disputes between my brother and me. I swear the man was the epitome of patience. The guy hadn’t been able to keep his own fishing line in the water for more than 5 seconds for years until my brother and I finally became coordinated enough to catch fish instead of everything else that surrounded us including each other at times.

As time passes, the familiarization of fatherhood is constantly taking me back in time. Back to unanswered questions as to why my father did things with such specificity and consistence, pride and purpose, patience and poise.

My son is now 2. Raising him along his mother’s side has made me realize that my dad was providing a template for fatherhood, a guide that would take over a quarter century to pass on in full.

Now, I consciously and most of the time unconsciously follow this guide that has been ingrained into my mind. When the timing for a moment of encouragement or discipline occurs, my father’s classic “thata kid!” or “you better shape up” phrase instinctively comes out of my mouth.

For every day of fatherhood that passes, I am thankful for my father’s guidance, and for my son. Together, they have given me a life that allows me to relive moments of love, joy and wonder. Only this time, I get to watch these moments through my father’s eyes.

Colton Jones is the sourcing manager for Wild Idea Buffalo Company, and Dan & Jill’s son in-law.


  • Posted on by Lonnie King

    Aloha Colton:

    Beautifully said!

    Lonnie King
    Holualoa, HI

  • Posted on by Susan Turnbull

    Thank u Colten- I absolutely loved your tribute. Beautifully written. You are one of the very best fathers ever – and especially enjoyed chatting with your boys last night— your love, personality and guidance shines right thru those precious little guys- and of course that special twinkle in the eyes that mama Jillian adds to the mix is there too. I love u all❤️ You guys are golden!!

  • Posted on by Bob York

    Awesome tribute, to your Father. I’m sure Lincoln will be praising you as time passes. Time flies, but I think you’ve got a handle on it with life lessons passed on to you. What a great team you have around you too.

  • Posted on by Dad


    With any father, you want the next generation to do better. Guess what? We are doing just fine and on track to Lincoln’s generation. Let him know that when he thinks he is too old to know everything,he needs to do his part to make the next step with his family. Always better. Always work harder, put in the hours and provide and love his children more and more every hour of the day. Even with events like, Colton don’t put that in your mouth, Colt your fishing line in in the tree’s, Colt why did you tie your horse to the bumper of the car….found that one on the way to work bouncing behind the car. That way ugly. No animals where harmed in that prank. I love you, always very proud of both my men, live with a very clear mind. Happy Fathers Day! Thank you. Dad.

  • Posted on by AJ Jackson

    What a wonderful tribute to both your father and the responsibility you share. I wish you many happy years of fatherhood with many joyful memories!

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