Families of Origin
The girl was the oldest of four daughters. Her father, who she loved deeply, suffered his first heart attack in his twenties and he died of a heart attack at age 48. His health put a great deal of stress on the family with the mother needing to earn a living and other family members helping to raise the children. The girl had to accept significant responsibilities at a very early age.
The girl grew up in a family where little girls were routinely molested by some of the men in the family and nothing was done about it.. This set up a situation where the older girls tried to protect the younger girls from suffering the same kind of pain. Alcoholism, diabetes and heart disease were common and life expectancy was short. Divorce and long-standing grudges were very common.
There was very little religious influence in the family and the Masonic Lodge, Eastern Star and Rainbow Girls organizations served as substitutes for church. When the girl was senior in high school someone invited she and her sister to a young peoples group at a small local church. The first time they heard a presentation of the Bible message, they both decided to follow Jesus and that made all of the difference in their lives.
Historic building where church met
The boy was the oldest of three sons. His father and mother were both strong and very capable. The home provided a stable, loving environment. The boy’s father was a self-taught tool maker and was never out of work for more than a day. He could fix almost anything and he taught the boy how to hunt and fish and do everything men were supposed to do. The boy grew up believing that men could do
Open Air Restrooms
Because he was one of the older, more responsible young people in the neighborhood, the boy worked on neighborhood farms from the age of 13 to earn a little spending money. The local 4-H club was a very important part of his life with the county fair being the high point of the year.
Golden wedding anniversaries were common in the family and divorce was rare. Extended family get-to-gathers were common activities. His grandmother on his mother’s side was legendary for entertaining large groups of friends and family.
When he was able to drive, the boy began attending young people’s activities at one of the larger churches in town. The associate pastor’s wife was very gifted at presenting the truths of the Bible message. One evening after he got home from a meeting, the boy knelt beside his bed and committed himself to follow Jesus.
Although they came from very different backgrounds and experiences, the girl and the boy were both following Jesus and that made a solid foundation for a life together.