Jeff was not like the other Tracy men, he was determined to do this simple task for his son, but as he sat on his balcony, whisky in hand, he found himself finding this a lot harder than he'd assumed it would be.

He had never been the emotional type, not like all five of his boys. That had been Lucille's influence he supposed, and all their negative qualities had apparantly been inherited from him. As his mother so frequently reminded him.

After each utterance, 'Virgil's too obsessive', - his mother would reply, 'he gets it from you Jeff.'

'John has his head in the clouds...' - 'remember how you were at his age Jeff?'

'Gordon is far too argumentative!' - 'So are you Jeff!' - 'Mother I am not!' - 'Yes you are' - 'I am not' - Upon which his mother would reply - 'Jeff what are you doing now?'.

'Alan needs to settle down' - 'Jeff that boy has your restlessness!'

'Scott works too hard' he'd uttered from his pile of paperwork - His mother would just shake her head.

It seemed that all his boys goodness was from his Lucille, Scott's protectiveness, Virgil's sweetness, John's dreaminess, Gordon's sense of humour and Alan's passion for things he cared about.

Now how was he supposed to write about the love of his life, he didn't know how to begin. But he knew it as sure as he knew his own name, he wasn't going to exclude Lucy's memory from this 'family project'.


Jeff Tracy here,

I guess I need some kind of introduction, I'm proud to say I'm Alan's father. He's the last of my children and a fate worse than death if you hear him tell it, my baby.

My family - hmmm, what can I say other than, there is nothing, and I mean nothing more precious in the world to me than my family. I can' t tell you how many times I've had people come up to me over the years saying how much they admired me for bringing up five boys on my own after Lucy died. But I never accepted their praise, not because I didn't want to but because I knew, bringing up you boys was never a chore. Oh yes there were times, I remember one specific time with you and Gordon in the double buggy and a strategically placed woman's undergarment, and John and Scott and the whole high-school suspension fiasco, when I found you all a little trying. But truth be told you were all such good boys at heart.

Well most of the time. You all like to think your old Dad's in the dark about your little escapades, but I am Jeff Tracy, your father and remember this, I am all seeing. I know all about Scott's first year little crash of his jet at the air force, he really thought I had no idea about that. I knew about Virgil's late night activities when he'd invite one of his little girlfriends to stay here on the Island. I knew about John's indecent exposure tryst in a sattelite from the beginning. My friend Jack Logan was a police officer at Camp David and I heard pretty soon that my most secretive boy was in jail. But I also heard that Virgil had the situation under control. I knew all about Gordon and his poker-playing activities at WASP and I knew, this might come as a shock to you Alan, all about your drag-racing at Colorado!

See, you all think you can keep things from your dear old dad, but I'm afraid the day one of you keeps a secret from me is the day I'll be dead. And that's a long way a way as I'm only 54!

God 54! Don't ever take time for granted Alan, it passes so fast, it seems like yesterday that we brought Scott home from the hospital, a tiny scrunched up, new born and next month he'll be a 6'2, 180 lbs, 30 year old!

Your mother would have been proud of each of you, you're all so different, but all so perfect in your own way. Scott, excelling at the Air Force, commanding, leading, as your mother always said he would, Virgil, artistic, thoughtful, the wonderful person your mother had imagined. John, dreamy, doing what he always wanted to do, following the path your mother wanted him to follow. Gordon, witty, head-strong, optimistic, so like Lucille in personality, feisty, how she was. And you Alan, determined, passionate, fiercely independant, your mother wanted that for you.

Each of you have turned into wonderful, caring boys, boys I am proud to call my sons.

You may have thought that we regretted not having a daughter, having five sons. But we never did, Lucy was always such a charmer, she felt more at ease around men and she wanted nothing more than to take her five boys to Little League and give them advice about women. I was the same, coaching your Little League, teaching you to play baseball was all i ever wanted.

Of course the carefree world we knew crumbled when my Luce died.

No one ever prepares themselves to lose a partner, but when they are so young with such a young family, and as close as Lucy and I were it hits you harder.

We were two halves of a whole, your mother of course was all the goodness, but we fitted together, it was written in the stars that we were meant to be together. Perhaps to produce the fine young men, we called our sons. I don't know.

I do know, I used to stare at your mother from across the room and it would amaze me how I was capable of gaining her love. She was just always so perfect to me Alan. So perfect, oh she was no saint. She could be feisty, like our Gordon, stupidly dreamy like our John and downright argumentative at times , like you. But she was perfect for me.

She mellowed me, her Englishness was a cool balm on my occasional brashness. Her passion and her sweetness just bowled me over. And she loved me!

She loved me!

That was all she had to do and she became my whole world.

Then you five came along and you'd ahve been hard pushed to find a happier man alive.

But God does things for a reason, don't ask me why your mother had to die, but you and Gordon were saved and I have to be eternally greatful for that.

But is your mother still a part of my life, my heart, my soul? Yes, yes and god, yes. She is with me in all of you and in my heart, and sometimes I'll catch myself about to admonish one of you boys and I'll think what would Lucy say. And I'll bite my tongue.

Anyway I value you kids more than my life. If I've learnt anything in my life, it's don't leave anything unsiad.

Love your father