“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

"You've never met me and my family, but your father built our home ten years ago, and we will never forget him because of that."

Standing there next to my father's casket, overwhelmed by emotions, I didn't know how best to respond other than with a long, genuine hug.

There were many families who came to pay their respects that afternoon whom I had never met. Each one left me just as surprised as the last.

Looking back, I realize now the impact that afternoon had on my life. See, my dad wasn't flashy. He usually worked with holes in his socks, wore the same hard hat he owned as a teenager, and preferred quiet evenings at home with the family. The homes he built and the lives they changed were topics he never discussed.

Family and friends sometimes ask what I want to become. They throw out big words like CEO, board member, or co-founder.

I guess you can say that my direction is finally clear. Like many of us, I still have no idea of what I might become. However, I have a much clearer sense of who I might become, and I know that will lead me down the right path.

I want to be like dad.

— Ed Kennedy