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Seniors give age-old advice to new dads

Rick Willard gives new fathers advice on June 5, 2024, at the Tanglewood Center in Lyndora. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle

LYNDORA — They say “with age comes wisdom,” and Butler County seniors might prove that saying true with their advice for new fathers.

While waiting for lunch earlier this month at the Tanglewood Center, seniors offered up advice for new fathers, including encouragement for fathers to spend time with children and teach them respect.

“Give them lots of attention while they’re young,” Rick Willard said while at the Lyndora-based senior center — one of seven senior centers around Butler County — on June 5 when he and others were asked if they had any words of wisdom for new fathers following a game of bingo.

Two others at the center echoed that sentiment.

“Just enjoy them — they’re only young once,” Butler resident Steve Fetterman said.

From left, Larry Burgard and Rick Willard give new fathers advice on June 5 at the Tanglewood Center in Lyndora. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle
A group of seniors at the Tanglewood Center give advice to new fathers June 5, 2024. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle

David McKinnis told new fathers to “spend all the time you have with your kids and your family, and teach your children a lot of respect.”

Senior Larry Burgard told fathers to tell their children that they love them every day.

In the southern part of Butler County, seniors echoed similar advice.

From left, seniors Frank Kratz and Peggy Kratz share words of wisdom on raising children on June 10, 2024, at the Cranberry Township Senior Center. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle

On June 10 at the Cranberry Township Senior Center, Frank and Peggy Kratz emphasized the importance of spending as much time as possible with children, saying that new fathers should be involved with their children’s activities.

Senior Ron West shares advice for fathers on June 10, 2024, at the Cranberry Township Senior Center. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle

Ron West, the father of two adult children, shared how important it is for fathers to be there at their children’s important life experiences. He also noted that parents should establish discipline early.

“Remind yourself that everything you do, they’re watching,” said West, who explained he also has two grandchildren who live with him.

Fred Reeve gives his advice for new fathers on June 10, 2024, at the Cranberry Township Senior Center. Vayda Pascarella/Butler Eagle

Senior Fred Reeve, a father of three children in their 30s, noted that fatherhood is a lifelong job. That involvement in a child’s life, he said, begins at birth, but it is important for parents to be there and to be supportive of their children throughout their lives.

Meanwhile, Reed Walters gave fathers a different piece of advice. Walters, who was at the Lyndora senior center, advised that fathers stay out of their children’s business.

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