On Thanksgiving morning, Mathews County and the whole world lost a man of great character. To most, he was the highly regarded boatbuilder Edward Diggs; to me he was Grandaddy.
I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time at my grandparents’ house as a child, and sometimes I got to see the legendary boatbuilder in action. At a young age, I did not understand what I was witnessing. I suppose I thought everybody’s Grandaddy built boats from scratch, or maybe because he made it look so easy I never stopped to realize what a talent he possessed. I think the main reason it took me so long to appreciate his talent is because he was always so humble about it. Building boats was his profession, it was what he did to provide for his family. The notoriety that came along with it is something he tolerated. I’m sure he would have much rather been watching or playing golf than being interviewed, but he patiently endured it to appease Grandma and all his other fans.
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