(The Federalist) -- My grandpa—my father’s father—smoked cigarettes from the time he was about nine years old until he was into his sixties. I was five in 1995 when his doctor told him he had to quit or he’d likely die in a year or less.
He and my grandmother lived one house down from my parent’s home where I grew up. They were at every school concert and sporting event their grandkids had. I can count on one hand the number of basketball games my grandparents missed in the nearly 20 years I played. To say we were close would not do justice to the influence they had on my life. Grandma is still going strong today, in fact.
Grandpa did finally heed his doctor’s pleas and quit smoking cold turkey. I was 14 when he died nine years later of emphysema from decades of smoke and tar and tobacco pouring into his lungs. So yeah, I hate cigarettes. I would hate them even without the direct effect they’ve had on my life through the battle I witnessed my grandpa fight and to which, ultimately, he succumbed.
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