As few people have, I had the luxury of a great grandfather who lived up till I was into my adolescence. Family in fighting prevented me from visiting him as often as I should have, but the attitude my father still takes to this old man's memory I swear borders on hero warship.
Things I have observed directly:
He loved the outdoors to the point of still seeking time to camp even while dealing with his first battle with cancer. He loved his gardens; the man had wonderful gardens and always kept them up till practically the day he died. He loved his music; a visit with him was not complete with out at least one family sing along. I have watched him climb a 10 ft pole and hang from a bar at the top by his knees - he was in his mid 60s. Emotional disharmony seemed to bother him a lot.
Things I have been told about with physical evidence:
He designed and built the family cabin, the docks on the island, and the erosion prevention system for the island. He collected "junk" with the thought of using it some day; dad and I still look at it and can't toss it ourselves because of the uses we could see for it all. He had a bachelors in agriculture which at the time he got it included the basics of most trades (structural, electrical, and mechanical) for use on a farm.
Things I have only been told about:
He quit his electrical job at the mill because they wanted him to put the company before his family. He once had a snow machine accident in his 60s; he broke many of his ribs, but crawled home to get duct taped up first then went to the hospital. He wasn't allowed to go to war because of his leaky heart yet he never let the condition slow him down from doing what he wanted. He once told my father how much he envied him for his patience yet both men show the same amount.