(This entry will be bumped to the top through Monday, 9/11)
In preparing this memorial tribute, one thing I noticed as I searched for more information was just how many people left comments about Dominick at the various memorial sites I visited. This was a man who was loved by many and is missed by even more.
Dominick would have been 45 this year, only a couple of years older than me. He was a municipal band broker and worked for Cantor Fitzgerald. After seeing a photo of him, I can imagine him in his daily work routine, easy going, hard working, with a ready smile and genuine affection for those around him. He had worked for Cantor Fitzgerald for eight years, and his wife Janet recalled, "He hardly ever missed a day of work, he hardly ever called in sick. He just loved doing what he did."
But work was NOT the most important aspect of Dominick’s life.
Devoted husband and father of three, his life was centered on his family. Between coaching little league for his son and running between multiple soccer practices and games for his daughters, he gave each of his children individual attention. "He managed to give each child an individual amount of time," Janet Calia recalled of her husband. "He felt sports gives children confidence, camaraderie and teaches them to play as a team." He also recognized the importance of spending individual time with just his wife. On the weekend before he died, after coaching little league on Friday, the kids went to spend the night with their grandparents and Dominick took Janet to Cape May and Atlantic City. After spending the first night alone together in quite some time, they came back home on Saturday for back-to-back soccer games for the girls.
Dominick children are now 17, 14, and 12 and I wonder how they will be remembering their dad this year. Even though he’s not here to see his eldest daughter graduate from high school, or his son become a teenager, I hope and believe that they do have many wonderful memories of their dad. After he died, his son, Dominick Richard Calia, wanted to change his middle name so he can be Dominick Jr. "My son is 7 years old," Janet Calia said at the time. "I tell him, `The seven years you had with dad is a lifetime, and some people don't even get that. It's the quality, not the quantity, that counts.' "
When I read that they held a memorial at St. Thomas More Roman Catholic Church in Manalapan for Dominick, I knew why this man had been chosen for me to memorialize. While I never knew Dominick in this life, as a Catholic I know that we are part of the same family. I know that Dominick is still a part of his family’s life through his prayers and intercessions for them. He is still at every game, every event, and while not in the way I’m sure his family would prefer, I hope they know how very much he IS still with them all.
Thank you Dominick Calia, for the example you gave us in your life, and please pray for us now, that more fathers and families will follow your example.
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United in Memory
Please be sure to read some of the other tributes as well, you can find them all here-