An obituary that appeared in an Alabama newspaper Sunday traced a complicated relationship between a man and his children.
Photo: jbird/Pixabay
Photo: jbird/Pixabay

'I mourn the man he should have been': Daughter writes obit for 'deadbeat dad'

An obituary published in an Alabama newspaper Sunday revealed a complicated, disconnected and heartbreaking relationship between a man and his children.

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The unsigned obituary, titled “Death of a deadbeat dad,” was published in the Birmingham News, AL.com reported. The death notice was written for Wayne Allen Swinney Sr., who died April 23, according to the website.

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“I don’t mourn the man that my father was on the day of his death because frankly, I didn’t know him,” the woman wrote.

According to the obituary, Swinney and his wife divorced in 1980, when the author of the newspaper notice was 15. The couple had four children, and Jennifer Swinney “took their divorce very hard,” AL.com reported. The children’s responses were different, the woman wrote -- “One with anger, one with tears, one with indifference, one with bewilderment. Forever marked. Forever changed.” 

The obituary author said she last saw her father in 1993 at a mall, “and he couldn’t get away quick enough,” AL.com reported.

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She wrote about the events her father missed, including proms, graduations, jobs, marriages and births of his grandchildren. 

The woman concluded by writing her father was “flawed,” “proud” and “just a man,” AL.com reported.

“All I know is that I mourn the man that he should have been,” she wrote. “I mourn the man that he could have been. May he rest in peace."

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