Usually obituaries abide by the adage to never speak ill of the dead, which might be why a recent eulogy by a fed-up Texas daughter is making headlines right now. CNN reports that after the death of Leslie Ray “Popeye” Charping, his daughter penned the following:
Leslie Ray “Popeye” Charping was born in Galveston on November 20, 1942 and passed away January 30, 2017, which was 29 years longer than expected and much longer than he deserved. At a young age, Leslie quickly became a model example of bad parenting combined with mental illness and a complete commitment to drinking, drugs, womanizing and being generally offensive… Leslie’s hobbies included being abusive to his family, expediting trips to heaven for the beloved family pets and fishing, which he was less skilled with than the previously mentioned. Leslie’s life served no other obvious purpose, he did not contribute to society or serve his community and he possessed no redeeming qualities besides quick whited [sic] sarcasm which was amusing during his sober days.
In our current artifice-plagued climate, such honesty is refreshing, if a bit brutal. It appears that this daughter is not exaggerating about her deadbeat dad, however, as Jezebel reports that Charping was convicted of many “ugly offenses over the years, including an assault in 1979 and another in 2008, when he poured hot liquid on his wife. In 2009, he violated a restraining order when he threatened to kill a female relative.”
Still, some have accused the writer of being disrespectful to her father, but in keeping with her candor, she is having none of that:
I apologize to anyone that my father hurt and I felt it would have been offensive to portray him as anything other than who he was. This obituary was intended to help bring closure because not talking about domestic violence doesn’t make it go away!… Although I appreciate everyone’s concern, it would have been much more appreciated at any time during my childhood. For those being cruel, please remember that you now resemble my father and I would be more than happy to pen your obituary as well.
It’s a sad story, but we can take solace in the fact that even though “Popeye” lived an awful life, his daughter clearly grew up to be awesome regardless.
[Note: Jezebel, like The A.V. Club, is owned by Univision Communications.]