TZ, My Father, and Me

It is hard for me to pinpoint exactly when The Twilight Zone came into my life. It was there for me when I was having trouble adjusting in elementary school, it was my friend when I felt alone in middle school, and it comforted me when my father lost his battle with cancer when I was in high school. Needless to say, I’ve always loved television, but The Twilight Zone holds a special place in my heart.

One episode that really touched me was “One For The Angels.” It was my father’s favorite. I remember watching it with him numerous times, both before and after he was diagnosed. He would tear up every single time. He was so touched by the fact that this sweet old man would sacrifice his own life for that of a child he barely knew. Without really knowing what lay ahead of him, he jumped into the void so that this young girl could live a full, happy life.

Once we found out my dad was terminal, this episode took on a whole new meaning. Before then, I would watch it and feel a little upset. When he was sick, we would watch the episode while he held me, and we would cry the whole time.

My father was a good man. He was a doctor who sacrificed his own health night after night in order to make sure he doing everything he could for his patient’s safety. He was a good father as well. He truly loved our family and he made sure we were taken care of. He gave his life for his patients and for his family.

He was truly one for the angels.

Murray Hamilton and Ed Wynn in "One for the Angels"

Ed Wynn’s character in “One for the Angels” was a spot-on image of my dad. As long as I keep the meaning of that episode in my heart, my father’s memory will never die.

—Scott Sommer