Sunday is Father’s Day — a celebration of dad and all he does throughout the year.

It can be a bittersweet day for those who no longer have the patriarch of the family around to honor. My father has been gone for seven years now and there are still times it feels like just a few months.

It’s funny the things that stick in your mind about people when they are gone. Little things that don’t really mean anything — except to you.

My father had many good qualities. He was honest, hard-working and always ready to extend help to others. He also had a few, well, let’s call them quirks.

We had a summer cottage in Michigan for more than 20 years. Each weekend, we would pack up and travel north for fishing, swimming and a host of other activities. Packing the car was always dad’s job.

First, just let me say the man had an uncanny ability to pack three cars’ worth of stuff in the back of our station wagon and still have clear visibility in the rear-view mirror.

Anyone who unwittingly put something in the car without his knowledge was quickly redressed. “Now, why would you put that there?” he would demand. “If you put it here, we still have room for…” And of course, he would be right.

He also loved to mow the grass. I would watch him walk along behind the mower holding a conversation with himself. Sometimes, I guess you just need to work things out on your own.

My father was a very practical man. You could present him with a problem and he would, most times rather quickly, mull it over in his head and come up with a solution that was both feasible and logical. He was long on common sense and seemed able to consider the ramifications of an action with the speed of today’s computers. It always amazed and humbled me.

He also made me feel special. I was his “doll.” We spent a lot of time together at the Marathon station and at home. I would follow him around and ask enough questions to make a monk break his vow of silence to tell me to shut up. I never heard that from him, though.

Trips to the Eagles and VFW were always a treat. I would sit beside him on a bar stool sipping an orange soda and feeling like I was on top of the world as my feet dangled and I would swivel around enjoying the squeaks and squeals of my seat.

There are still times I could really use my father’s no-nonsense approach to problems and I will forever miss him. It doesn’t hurt quite so much anymore that he is gone but I think I’ll go have an orange soda.

Happy Father’s Day to one and all.