Lee Odden

What’s Important

Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Rant

I’ve seen Jim Boykin call these cat posts, so here’s a bit of a “cat post” from me.

This weekend I went to North Dakota for the funeral of my 91 year old Grandfather. He was quite a character and a story teller. Also a bit ornery. Think of a combination of Albert Finney in Tim Burton’s movie, “Big Fish” and Archie Bunker. For some reason, he rarely ever revealed his ornery side to me – just the stories.

One of my favorite tales was of how he worked as a boxer at a circus during the great depression. Others included World War II exploits. Even in his 80’s he’d call me “buckshot” and boast about how all the nurses liked him and how tough he was. True or not, the memories are there. Funerals can make one relflect on what’s important.

With this sort of mindset, I prepared to go back home from North Dakota to Minnesota and ended up in the emergency room. We feared my mom was having a heart attack but it ended up being something else related to stress. All I know is, it was quite a scare for a while. After seeing her survive a bout with cancer several years back, I know she’s trooper. Seeing her in the hospital like that was also a stark reminder that the things you value most should not be taken for granted. Thankfully, she’s doing much better.

I’m just so glad to be in the situation I’m in with a great family, growing business and an industry I truly enjoy to work in and learn from. Corny as that sounds, I know it’s what’s important.

[/end cat post]

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Lee Odden About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on B2B marketing topics including content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely running, traveling or cooking up something new.


  1. we have to constantly remind ourselves what is the most important thing for us to live in this world.. i know there are (a lot of) times that we seem to ignore it.

    best regards to you and your dear mom… 🙂

  2. Avatar cpdohman says

    my deepest sympathy to you and your family on the passing of your grandfather. i hope your mother is feeling better, that kind of experience is very scary.

    thanks for sharing your weekend and memories of your grandfather in north dakota lee. it brings back many memories for me of visiting my grandparents and relatives in nodak. the trips for funerals of grandparents and loved ones are sad but the earlier memories are grand.


  3. Lee … my sympathy to you.

    You know, lately many bloggers have been saying that posting posts such as this one where you share something more than just your professional knowledge is a waste of time.

    Knowing you for some time now, post about your life kind of shows me your “off work” face. It’s good for professional relationship building.

    I hate to write about business for this post as losing someone close to you is devastating. I learned this personally when I lost my father little over a year ago. Lesson learned …. don’t take people for granted.

  4. Avatar Lee Odden says

    Thanks guys I appreciate it. There were some more roller coaster events today, but things are looking up.

    Hopefully I’ll be back in the office on Wed!