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Dear Tom,

Please consider my husband, Leon Slaughter, Sr.  for the Real Fathers Real Men acknowledgement. Our families have been in the same community for over 50 years but we didn’t meet until 1991. I was recently divorced with 5 children ages 3-15.

I was surprised on our first date, when he asked why the children weren’t dressed.  He’s planned a family movie date.  He waited patiently while they dressed.  After several months, he asked me to marry him and I refused.  A friend told me that the fact that his children were grown and he still wanted to marry me with 5 children spoke to his character. My father told me he could tell he loved me.

Once while riding on a city bus I saw a group walking from the neighborhood candy store.  I couldn’t immediately recognize them, but thought they made a nice looking family. Wondering where the mother was, I looked closer as the bus passed them only to realize the only person missing was me. We married in 1995.

He has stepped into the role of husband, father, to great grandfather without skipping a beat.  He’s supported and encouraged the children and grandchildren through their stages of growth and it hasn’t always been easy.  He saved our oldest grown son from drowning when he was only 3.

Leon has had a double hip replacement, both rotator cuffs repaired, has a pin in one ankle and recently tore his meniscus while cutting the yard of a neighbor that was hospitalized.  He’s my bionic man. Please help me show him how much he’s loved and appreciated by helping him repair the transmission of his 1998 dodge Durango.

REAL FATHERS REAL MEN: Leon Slaughter, Sr.  was originally published on

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