I first met my wife, Shellie outside the café at Georgetown College. She was wearing a Mickey Mouse hat, Mickey Mouse shirt, Mickey Mouse overalls, Mickey Mouse jewelry, Mickey Mouse socks, and Mickey Mouse shoes. Beyond that, I do not know what else she was wearing that might have been Mickey Mouse related! Anyway, she certainly caught my eye.
I was a senior and she was a freshman. We began dating during the second semester of that year. After my graduation, I joined the Army and eventually shipped out to serve in Germany. Shellie stayed at Georgetown to finish her education. While I was in Germany, Shellie got a great opportunity to travel to Italy with President Crouch, the President’s Ambassadors, and others. I told her I would like to visit her in Italy if I could work it out. She was there for a week and by the final Thursday of the trip, she had all but given up hope that I’d be able to visit her (especially since I had not communicated with her for quite some time). What she didn’t know is that I had worked out details to travel to Italy from Germany on a train to surprise her. I sold a guitar, bought a ring, and took a thirteen hour train trip to visit the most beautiful girl in the world.
I arrived in Rome and took a cab part of the way to her hotel. I had to walk most of the way because the cab driver was driving in circles to run up the charges. So, when I arrived at her hotel, she hadn’t made it back from dinner. I waited in the lobby for her to return. When she saw me, the first words out of her mouth were, “I’m going to kill you!” Of course, she didn’t actually kill me! I had arranged to hang out with the group for Thursday night and Friday. On Friday, Shellie and I went to a restaurant not far from the hotel. That night, I proposed to her and she accepted. After dinner, we went to the fountain of Trevi and the Spanish steps, where we shared the good news with the rest of the group.
A while later, I had to come back to the United States on leave because my Aunt passed away. After the funeral, I traveled to Georgetown to spend some time with Shellie. I was scheduled to return to Germany on a Monday Morning. Shellie and I were driving around Georgetown on Friday afternoon and decided to get married before I went back to my duty station. We went to the courthouse and bought a marriage license. Then I called Dr. Jo Lunceford. He agreed to perform the marriage ceremony the next day following the football game! Shellie was a Tiger Dancer, and danced at halftime of the game. After her performance, I took her back to her dorm to get ready for our wedding. I went back and watched the rest of the football game. After the game, I got dressed and met Shellie, Dr. Lunceford, and several family members in the arboretum at Georgetown College. We got married in front of the fountain there on September 19, 1998!
We have been married now for 15 years, and our bond keeps getting stronger. We love to reminisce, which is easy to do since we live close to campus!