Dads ROCK!
Check out how many kids think their dads are awesome

We asked kids to tell us what exactly makes their dad legendary, and (with the help of moms across SJ), we received hundreds of entries.

Each entry was more impressive than the last – we read about dads who were leaders and cheerleaders, providers and caregivers – but we narrowed it down to select some pops who deserve lots of props. It’s clear these kids see their dads as more than just father-figures – to them, “dad” means “hero.”

Grand Prize Winner

Brooke Shapiro, 11, Marlton, with dad Jeffrey


Photo: David Baldwin

My dad is the best dad in the whole world. Why? First of all, he has a physical disability called arthrogryposis. He needs the help of braces and crutches to walk. But that does not stop him. He drives us everywhere and goes to work every day.

Second and most of all, he cares for and protects our family. He is always optimistic, supportive and has a great sense of humor. He is the one who got me into music, an amazing part of my life. My dad is my hero, and I love him.

Runners Up

AllisonAllison Kaminer, 7, Medford, with dad Mark

My daddy rocks because he plays guitar while I sing a song called “Biking.” We wrote the song ourselves. I love when my daddy helps me do a back handspring in gymnastics. He spots me and makes sure that I do not get hurt. My daddy is awesome!

He supports me when I have a test and need help studying. Also, my daddy always gives me five more minutes to sleep when he wakes me up to get ready for school. My daddy takes care of me. He helps me get ready for school. I love my daddy!

SalvatoreSalvatore Neri, 9, Mount Laurel, with dad Brian

My dad rocks because he plays PS3 with me. He makes me laugh so hard, even when I am sad and we’re talking serious. He cheers me on at all my football, basketball and baseball games. When I won my championship games, he ran to me and hugged me. I like when it’s just me and him because it’s quiet and my sister isn’t around to bother us. We watch movies together that my dad watched when he was little (“JAWS” is my favorite). My dad has a big heart and teaches me wrong from right. My grandpop died last month, and now my dad takes care of our whole family and Grandmom too. My family and I do a lot of group hugs too. This is why my dad rocks!

Honorable Mentions

Elaina McCollum, 11, Cherry Hill, on dad Mike

Every daughter says their dad is the best, but no dad can compare to mine. He is a selfless, hard-working and loving person. My dad is one of the most generous people you’ll ever meet. He puts others before himself and will sacrifice his plans to help others.

My dad is a hard-working man, he will do anything for his kids and my mom – help with homework, come to watch us play sports and help around the house – even if he is really busy at work.

My dad is willing to do anything for me. He will drive as fast as he can in a snow storm to come watch me at a gymnastics competition. As you can see, my dad is the best and totally rocks. Only a real hero can do what he does. He is my hero.

Julia Girgenti, 11, Marlton, on dad Jeff

My dad is so kind and is very smart. He always makes time to snuggle, play sports or even just talk with me. He also helps me with my homework whenever I am struggling with it. My dad is a great chef who is also great at coming up with little songs that make my sister and I laugh every time. He is always willing to play with me and give me piggy-back rides. I also enjoy sitting down and playing board games with him because my dad never makes them boring.

My dad also comes to all of my piano recitals and cheers me on, even if I miss a few notes. He is a great role model because he always does the right thing, even if it’s hard. He helps me when I have problems and is always there to pick me up when I’m down and make me feel better no matter how upset I am. I love my dad so much because he is so caring and sweet. I don’t know what I would do without my biggest supporter and great role model in my life.

Jacob & Olivia Bathurst, 9-year-old twins, Gloucester City, on dad Dave

Our dad rocks because he works very hard – 12 hours a day, 6 days a week most weeks. But he has time to take us fishing and go to the beach and do fun stuff and work on cars with us and teach us about cars – we all love cars.

He always makes sure he has time for us. We go to VW car shows. He loves to ride bikes with us and play games. He rocks because he always puts us first, and he really loves us.

Lilly Kolbeck, 7, Mount Laurel, on dad Justin

My dad rocks because he’s my best friend. He works so hard just so I can take dance and gymnastics lessons and play softball. He comes to all my softball games to watch me play. He brings my little brother with him. He brings me to my dance lessons when my Mom can’t and he takes off work early when I have half days at school so he can pick me up. I have the best dad and I love him very much.

Natalie DiRaddo, 9, Franklinville, on dad Mike

My dad rocks because he is a very caring and generous man. He works hard each day at work, often for 10 to 12 hours a day, to provide for our family. He doesn’t have an easy job but he is willing to do it to give my family and I the things he thinks we deserve. Even though he works hard, he is always willing to have fun with my brother and me. He can be silly and fun but he can also be caring and compassionate. My daddy rocks, and I love him so much.

June 2016
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