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Father's Day Stories

BY Buffalo Jackson Journal
BY Samuel Martin

Father's Day means a lot to us here at Buffalo Jackson. We love to celebrate fatherhood and the lives of those who have gone before us to make a better path. This year we want to highlight 5 families as they celebrate fatherhood and the lessons learned from childhood and beyond.


Shane Yoder Fathers Day


Shane Yoder

One quality about my dad that I really appreciate is that throughout his whole life he took on so much. He was always really busy doing a lot of different things as a custom home builder and in stressful situations all the time running a company by himself and he never used his stress or his busy-ness as a reason to neglect time with us or even just being harsh with us. It was never an excuse not to treat people good. He never transferred his stress unduly onto others. My dad is also straight up an honest and he sleeps well at night because of it. He’s built his life and his reputation and his business on integrity and his character and that’s something that I really value and I see in him.

We are teaching our kids to be kind, conscientious of others, to treat people appropriately and to not be annoying humans. We’re also teaching our kids that life is changing and that they have to adapt. They’ve adapted to living in multiple different countries, and living on a boat. We’re teaching them that they have to work through change.


Dortch Family


Kelsey Acker & Katie Dortch with their father Lee Dortch.

Papa has always been able to own up to his mistakes. He was always quick to apologize when he messed up and had the ability to be vulnerable and show his heart deeply regretted whatever said mistake had taken place. That was huge for me to see as a young girl who was bound to make plenty of mistakes of her own. It taught me humility and that I was never above apologizing to someone even for the smallest of things.

My favorite memories come from the start of our relationship. With two younger siblings, I learned real quickly that if I wanted to go with dad, I had to be ready at all times. There is a beauty in the fact that sometimes we just want to be with people and not just always want something from them. Connection comes from spending time with each other. Those memories have impacted my role as a mother and remind me to cherish that my daughters just want to spend time with me.


Jillson Family Fathers Day


Casey and Forest Jillson with their father Brian (Bo)

Dad has been a ski patroller for 34 years. He has done so much for this mountain. It's crazy to think about all of the runs he has helped shape, all of the people he has helped, the knowledge he has on patrol and about this mountain. He has an incredible work ethic and he works really hard. He lives his life with pride and a lot of integrity.

He takes a lot of pride in the history of this place and where his family comes from.


Benedict Family Fathers Day


Davis Benedict photographed with is father Randy on their property in Colorado.

One of the toughest lessons my father has taught me is to always do something right the first time. Therefore you don’t have to go back and redo it. It makes you accountable to your actions and shows that you care about the task at hand. Yes, it may be the longer and harder way of performing a task, but at least you have the self-satisfaction of knowing you performed it right the first time. Leaving something better than how you found it resembles your character.

He is a very honest and upright individual who doesn’t put up with nonsense. He always finds the right way of doing something and sticks to his morals first.


Acker Family Fathers Day


Tyler Acker & his father Mickey Acker.

My dad and I both train labradors for field trials and hunting. Much of what my dad has taught me in life has been integrated into how I train dogs and love them well. It has been a connective journey of learning how to train, discipline, and empower our dogs to be the best they can be more importantly as great hunting dogs. It’s also revealed to me how much my dad loves me and respects me as a man because we are not only just teaching our dogs, but also teaching each other. One of the most needed roles as a father is to empower them in childhood, and respect them in adulthood. He has done that well for me as I see different perspectives and different ways of doing things.

Our heritage doesn’t define our identities, but our identity is impacted by our heritage. I am Native American from each side of the family with my heritage being Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Choctaw. My dad is a strong example of our Native American heritage with the way he loves his family, works hard, and is an incredibly skilled and diverse man. The journey of our ancestors was never easy, but my dad has been a prime example that our past doesn’t dictate our future nor do we have to live in a victimized mentality of what has happened and that minimize our potential of what can happen in our lives.


Randy Peterson Fathers Day


Randy Peterson with his sons Griffin and Colton

I admire Griffin's approach to learning new things. He generally jumps in and will work at learning something with a very strong work ethic. He does not like to take short cuts and has more patience than I could ever imagine. He is also a bridge builder and is loyal to his friends and family. He trys to minimize conflict, which I have the upmost respect for. As for Colton, I admire his generosity. He has a huge heart for helping others and is always offering to help our neighbors and friends in all kinds of ways.

One of our favorite spots are the mountains of North Carolina, particularly at the 2000 acre YMCA Camp Harrison up in Wilkes County. We have been highly connected to the camp for over a decade and it holds a special place in our hearts. We have gone with generally the same group of families since the boys were very small and they have all somewhat "grown up" there. In addition to family camp, both boys have spent many weeks there for resident camp each summer. It is a magical place to build relationships, grow in their faith and certainly experience the connection with nature.

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