Devin Scillian: My father taught me about honor, diligence, purpose and commitment

Author: Devin Scillian, Local 4 Anchor, @DevinScillian, devins@wdiv.com
Published On: Jun 15 2012 11:33:15 AM EDT
Devin Scillian's father, Billie Hugh Scillian
DETROIT -

Billie Hugh Scillian wasn't born in a hospital; he was born in a small house in Lyon County, Kentucky. His dad wasn't around very much.  And there wasn't anyone in the extended family to guide him in the direction of college.

But after becoming the first person in his family to have a college degree, he became an officer in the U.S. Army and embarked on a life that taught me just about everything I know about honor, diligence, purpose, and commitment.  (Three tours of duty in Vietnam were just part of that.).

And our many moves across the country and around the world gave me my thirst for travel and the curiosity that I think put me on the path to a life in journalism.

But just now, it's his golf game I've been thinking about. Growing up, the house was chock full of trophies from Dad's tournament conquests.  (My brother Troy seemed to inherit more of Dad's game than I did.)

This year, in February, my dad turned 76 and he marked the occasion by going out a few days before his birthday and shooting 68.  (That's neither a misprint nor an exaggeration.)

And a few weeks ago, my parent's took a 50th anniversary trip to Scotland.  Dad hadn't made any advance arrangements to play at Saint Andrews, the venerable Bethlehem of golf. 

But out of the blue, Mom sent Troy and I an email that said that Dad had managed to get into a foursome, had rented a set of clubs and was on the Old Course at that moment.

And I in Detroit and Troy in Dallas both cried.