The Rev. Danny Gladney preached the importance of fatherhood while standing behind a podium at Aberdeen High School about the same time plenty of daddies in Amory were straightening their ties and their daughters were primping the final touches to look immaculate.

The parking lot of Aberdeen High School was full, as daughters donned their Sunday best with their small hands clinched inside their fathers’ hands. The photos of daddies dancing with their daughters at Amory’s Old Armory were just as stunning of a sight.

Nearly simultaneously last Thursday, the Aberdeen Parent Center and Amory’s Beta Sigma Phi Beta Nu chapter each pulled off well-supported events with a great ulterior motive – providing quality daddy, daughter time.

Like the Rev. Gladney said, it takes all of us to help a child. He continued to say children bend over backwards to please a father before stressing fathers should lead by example by helping their wives and showing them love. That kind of character development sets the standard for what daughters will expect from future relationships.

Followed by other scripture-inspired lessons about parenting, Gladney stressed for fathers to spend time with their daughters.

It means the world to those little beauty queens when they bundle in camouflage on a cold morning to head to a deer stand with daddy for a few hours or spout off football lingo like a champ while watching the big game together.

It makes those stubble faces light up to hear their daughters’ laughs when they volunteer their work-calloused hands for a fingernail painting experiment.

Daddy/daughter time can turn the girly girls into muddy tomboys for a day, and add a softer tone to those tough-looking men’s stern voices. That bond has a way of melting hearts, and it’s why it’s tough to be a teenage boy taking a girl on her first date.

The connection between a father and a daughter can’t be torn apart even after he gives her away on her wedding day.

It takes more than just parents to raise a child. It takes supportive neighbors, the lessons of coaches and teachers and the encouraging words of authority figures to shape the youth, but a strong parent is the be-all and end-all in someone's life.

Heredity provides those eyes, nose and smile, and daily observations of parents build their personalities. The parental bond on occasions like the daddy/daughter affairs make memories that will never fade.

To the organizers of both events, you did a great job with a worthy cause. To the fathers and daughters, don’t let sharing a social event be the only excuse to jut away together for a while. You have a lot of lessons in life to learn from each other.

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