Kids say why their dads are the best


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Do you have the world’s best father?

The top entrants of Viera Voice’s World’s Best Dad contest think they do.

Just in time for Father’s Day, Grace Ellery, Shane Angus, Zach Knight, Marissa Gonzales and Gigi and Dominick Piscitelli, submitted winning essays praising their fathers for their hard work, courage and playfulness.

Grace Ellery said her father, Leigh, shows strength and stays upbeat despite battling a dreaded disease.

“My dad is loving, giving and hardworking,” she wrote. “He coached my brothers in soccer for 13 years, and has been to every one of my dance recitals. He volunteers for school events and field trips. He was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma and is undergoing chemotherapy, which makes him tired. Although he doesn’t feel well, he is still there for us. He is brave and positive and I love him.”

Shane Angus said his father, Sean, is always there for him and his brother, despite a demanding job that involves a long commute.

“My dad is a firefighter for Miami-Dade County,” Shane wrote. “He is the best because even though he wakes up at 2:30 a.m. to drive 3 ½ hours to work, he’s always at my brother and my important events. Some days he’s had no sleep but always has the biggest smile for us.”

“My dada is the best dada because he plays LEGOS with me and tickles me when I’m sad!” Zach Knight wrote of his father, Alex. “And he carries me on his back sometimes. He works hard to make sure I can stay home with Mommy after school.”

Marissa had a lot to say about her dad, David Gonzales, calling her essay “My Incredible Blessing.” Because she speaks for so many children who would love to have a father of their own, we kept every word.

“I know everyone thinks their dad is special or the best. To that person, he is. To me, my dad absolutely is. Our story might be a little different than most. My dad and I met when I was 3. He was a friend of the family’s and he and my mom eventually started dating and, well, the rest is history.

“Since that moment, he loved me and I always felt like he did. He took me in and accepted me as his own and has been the only father I have ever known. 

Over the years, I have learned so many lessons from him as he has lived through very difficult situations in life that have each served as lesson points for me. Probably the most important lesson I think he wants me to take away from him is to work hard and believe in myself. However, I think the most important lesson that he has taught without realizing it is unconditional love.

“I am sure it is not easy for a man to come into a family and accept a child that is not really his. He has never made me feel like I didn’t belong. Every day when he comes home from work, I can count on him to find me in the house and give me a hug and ask about my day. 

“Even though I know he works very hard at his job and often takes other side jobs on weekends, he always finds a moment to plan a father/daughter movie or dinner date or just talk to me about things going on in my life. He makes me laugh when I want to cry, he makes me smile when I feel discouraged. Most of all, he has made me feel like a blessing instead of a burden.

“Some fathers are given by chance and some are given by God. I am thankful that my dad was chosen for me and I will never take that for granted. Because of him, I will know how to love even in a harsh world and without expecting anything in return. He helps me to see the beauty/positive in any situation.”

Gigi and Dominick gave their father, Lou Piscitelli, a double nod.

“My dad is the most positive male influence in my life. He holds the door for me, puts dinner on the table every night and teaches me that I deserve nothing but the best,” Gigi said.

“He and I have the most similar sense of humor so we always keep each other laughing and smiling. We bond over golf, however, golf also causes sarcastic arguments when I beat him. I love my dad and I’m so thankful for everything he does for me and my family.”

There are plenty of sports activities to love in the Piscitelli household.

“My dad is the best because he coaches my baseball team and he takes me fishing, “ Dominick said. “He teaches me how to do custom cabinetry in his business, L.A. Custom Woodwork & Designs. He teaches me how to fix cars too.

“He is the best dad I could ask for. He always keeps me smiling. I love my dad so much.”

Winners received a golf outing for their dad at Duran Golf Club in Viera, dinner at The Melting Pot at The Avenue Viera or a full-service car wash from Top Dog Express in Viera.