As far as Nicole Bradley is concerned, John Bradley is a true hero.
No doubt, it has been that way for nearly the past three decades.
After his wife, Aretha, died 28 years ago after losing her battle to breast cancer, John Bradley — whom his daughter describes as a man of relentless faith and compassion and perseverance — went to great lengths to ensure the couple’s nine children remained a close-knit unit.
To his credit, the Bradleys did just that, making proud the man who, as his daughter tells it, conducted himself with integrity and class in the process.
“He never brought another woman around us,” Nicole told MemphiSport in its salute to Super Dads. “The love he has for his family is one I’ve never seen before. We lost our mother 28 yrs ago to breast cancer. And my dad did not falter.”
Instead, John, in Nicole’s estimation, masterfully filled the void left by his wife.
“He did the unimaginable,” Nicole said. “He raised nine children by himself never remarried just waiting to be with my mom.”
A longtime Plummer who also has spent years as a minister, John Bradley routinely finds time to hasten to various Mid-South lakes to fish, a trend even Nicole, her children, and a few of her siblings have come to embrace.
So much, in fact, that they once arranged to take their father on a fishing trip.
“Bradley loves fishing,” Nicole said. “He has been fishing for more than 30 years. I think he loves it because it’s peaceful and it’s his time to relax. The kids and I actually took my dad out for a day on the lake. He enjoyed it tremendously.”
That John has steadfastly demonstrated to be a devoted father to his children is something Nicole says inspires her daily to maximize her potential. A 36-year-old Memphian and East High graduate, Nicole is an accomplished entrepreneur as owner of two Crumpy’s Hotwings franchises, one of the Mid-
South’s most popular black-owned businesses.
“The most memorable moment for me is everyday I get to spend time with him,” Nicole said of her father. “He has been my rock and I cherish each passing day. Father’s Day is special because at 36, my father is still trying and wanting to help me. I am grateful to have John Bradley as my father.”
Not to mention, a true hero.
Andre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. To reach Johnson, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.