My Father Rocked. And Every So Often Rolled.


Our Dad who had several names: Joe, Dad, Booter, and our favorite, Bubby, the given moniker from his firstborn grandchild, inevitably how grandparents tend to be named. 

In honor of Fathers Day, I’d like to elaborate on just what my father has done to make a difference in the realm of Bucks, Hunterdon and possibly the stepchildren counties of Mercer and Montgomery. Joseph Thomas Wingert helped/made the Bucks County Herald get its start and put it into fifth gear despite the challenges. Every step of the way, he was there to not only support our mother, Bridget, but as always figured out how to sustain a dream. 

My father, Joe Wingert, not to be confused with the equally charming and handsome offspring (also named Joe) was exceptional with projects placed in front of him, but more importantly with people placed in front of him. If you’re really curious, his well-written obituary explains how diverse and magnanimous his experiences were.  

The Fitzpatrick Family in a rare photo opp with Bubby.

We’re talking everything from attaining an engineering degree as the first in his family to go to college, teaching at a junior college, spearheading logistics for the the New Jersey Lottery on behalf of IBM, sales, exquisite carpentry and building a brick patio with the entire family (I was relegated to playing the piano.) 

I made sandwiches to get out of the way as directed so to not disrupt progress.Things simply got done, and that’s the way it was with Dad…Bub. 

My brothers and sister all have stories – legacies, actually that will be passed on to our father’s grandchildren, and now great grandchildren of his and my mother that are happening now. He would be beaming on Fathers Day and pose for a photo (which he did not do pre-grandchildren). 

I could go on forever about the values, lessons and perhaps most importantly the humor our Dad taught us. Strict as he was, he was a great teacher, and I am still learning from him, and so are my children and the many nieces, nephews – and now, great grandchildren on their way. 

We lost Dad in April of 2015, and many of you will remember and never forget Joe Wingert’s indomitable personality and zest for life. It was he who supported my mother, Bridget Watson Wingert with her ongoing energy to keep local news and happenings real through the channel named Bucks County Herald. You wouldn’t be reading this had it not been for the wisdom and foresight of our parents, Joe and Bridget. 

Dad (Bubby – which even Bridget Wingert calls him) was an extraordinary individual, and more importantly as we think about Fathers Day, he’s on our minds. He remains the founder along with my mother of the Bucks County Herald. He encouraged Bridget to achieve her dream and independence. He raised one hell of a brood of talented and diverse group we call family. We are all wildly and happily different. 

At last count, it’s at least 30 and growing of us blessed with the Power of Bubby Wingert. Quite a legacy.

Happy Fathers Day, Everyone.  

by Bridget Fitzpatrick,resident journalist The Delaware Retiree Connection

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