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What’s in a name?

September 2, 2013 9 comments

So how did I come to get the name that I have?

My first name is based on my paternal grandfather’s first name. His name was Robert, but everyone called him by his nickname, Billy. Granddaddy died in 1968 long before I was born, but I have heard many stories about his life. My parents wanted to call me Billy after my granddaddy, so they picked the closest formal name for the nickname and ended up with William. When I was growing up, everyone knew me by my nickname, Billy. When I started college I made the decision to drop the “y” and go with Bill. Of course when I see people that have known me my whole life, they still call me Billy.

According to, the name William means “protector” (English) or “resolute protector” (German) or “determined protector” (French). I like the theme that’s going on there. Many famous people throughout history have shared the name William. According to, the name was borne by at least four English kings, as well as rulers of Scotland, the Netherlands, and Prussia. Other celebrities include the 13th-century Scottish hero, William Wallace (of Braveheart fame), William Shakespeare (dramatist), William Blake (poet), William Wordsworth (poet), and so on. Oh yeah, and of course there’s William “Bill” Clinton…but I won’t go any further with that.

Next, my middle name, Daniel, comes from one of my paternal great grandfathers. I always called him “grandpa” since I never knew his son, my granddaddy that I mentioned above. He was a quiet, gentle man from what I remember of him. He died in 1988 at the age of 90; I was 11. Thinking back, I believe that he was the only person that I personally knew that was born in the 19th century. I have always thought it was so neat to have known someone who had lived through so much history.

From, “Daniel” has many origins, including Hebrew, Irish, and Welsh. In Hebrew the name means “God is my judge;” in Irish and Welsh, “attractive.” My namesakes (www.behindthename.cominclude persons such as Daniel, the Hebrew prophet from the Old Testament, English author Daniel Defoe, Swiss mathematician Daniel Bernoulli, and American frontiersman Daniel Boone (which is likely a distant relative of mine through my mother’s side).

Do you know what your name means and how you came to own it?

Check out today’s Daily Post on, Daily Prompt: Name that… You!, for more!

Categories: Uncategorized

Christmas in Heaven

December 16, 2012 Leave a comment

It is hard to imagine that this will be our first Christmas without my grandmother. She passed away this past July 24. My family went to a Memorial Service today for her at the cemetery, and the preacher read a poem that made me smile. As we left the service, they handed out bookmarks with this poem on them.

Many of you may have seen this, as I found many references to it when I was searching the Web for the proper attribution. If you are missing a loved one this holiday season perhaps this will help you put things in perspective.

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