AN UNEXPECTED LOVE
Cupid, the little chubby cherub who does amazing things with his bow and arrow, is thought to be especially active during the month of February. He took aim and shot a final bow into the hearts of Carolin Wolfe and Ken Thomason on February 14, 2010, as they were married before a host of family and friends in the Chapel at White Station Church of Christ. They will celebrate 9 happy years together this coming Valentine’s Day.
Their love story is special because neither was looking or expecting to find another love. Both had been married previously but had lost their spouses to death, Carolin in 2002 and Ken in 2006. Their lives continued as singles until that fateful day they met at church. A friend had connected them on Facebook, but, they had never met until the day Ken recognized Carolin and asked her to help him with his computer. A likely story, Ken!
Their courtship did begin in fact with Carolin helping Ken with his computer. That led to lunch, later a movie, another work session on the computer, dinner, etc. “We fell in love with each other! Neither of us expected this to happen, but happen it did!”, exclaims Carolin. Carolin says she fell in love with Ken because his kindness and compassion made it easy to love him. “He was exactly the man I was NOT looking for – but, I’m so glad I found him!”. Ken loves to be involved in so many things at Kirby Pines such as the Garden Club and exercise classes. Carolin especially likes the fact that he loves to cook and that he is a wonderful Christian man. How lucky can you be?
Ken says he fell in love with Carolin because “She is a lovable, patient and joyful person. She is kind and good to everyone, a faithful Christian and very generous with her time with others”. Carolin also has become a volunteer at The Blossom Shop and is involved in the Entertainers Chorus and the Kirby Pines Photo Club.
Both Carolin and Ken agree” “We enjoy so many things together and we have fun together. Perhaps the most fun we’ve had was keeping our friends and families guessing about our relationship after we met. They were always anticipating and asking questions”. Looking for and selecting their wedding rings was also a very special time. Finally, they “let the cat out of the bag” and began deciding a date for the wedding – Valentine’s Day was perfect. So, on a Sunday afternoon, February 14, 2010 they were married with Leon Sanderson officiating. Every member of the immediate family of both Carolin and Ken was present at the wedding. A joyful time for friends and family and the joining of two families together.
Ken was born and grew up on a farm in Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee. Prior to completing high school at the age of 17, Ken enlisted in the Navy. On leaving the Navy, he returned to complete high school and tried commercial and residential painting. Deciding that profession was not for him, Ken enrolled in Barber College, eventually establishing his own business for 56. He was President of the Federal Hair Cutters Credit Union for 12 years and for 24 years, he served as an Elder of the White Station Church of Christ. From his first marriage, he has 2 daughters, 5 grandchildren, 3 great-grandchildren with another on the way.
Carolin was born in Ohio but moved to West Virginia at an early age. She was the oldest of 4 children, 2 girls, and 2 boys. She changed schools 6 times because of her father’s work in construction. Following graduation from high school, she completed 2 years at Freed-Hardeman in Henderson, Tennessee, then went to Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas, completing her BS Degree in 1963. She married soon after graduation and moved to Memphis, Tennessee. From this marriage, she had 1 daughter, 2 sons and 8 grandchildren. Carolin obtained a Master’s Degree from Memphis State in 1973 and spent 45 years at Harding Academy as a teacher or principal, retiring in 2009. From her demeanor and personality, one can deduct what a wonderful kindergarten and first grade teacher she was!
So, back to the love story. Although during their short marriage they have had some sadness, their love has increased as well as their family members. Their favorite place to visit is Gatlinburg and they have visited there many times during their marriage. It was the place they selected for their honeymoon. They made the decision to become residents of Kirby Pines in August of 2016, and Carolin says, “We love living at Kirby Pines and participating in all the activities”.
Being devout Christians, both Carolin and Ken felt that 2 scriptures have guided their lives and asked they be included in their story. From Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand”. And from Isaiah 46:4: “I will be your God throughout your lifetime until your hair is white with age. I made you and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.”
Chances are, if you see a couple walking along holding hands, it is very likely to be Ken and Carolin. Many couples living at Kirby Pines, are in second and even third marriages. So, if you are single and wish to remain that way, you better watch out because Cupid is alive and well and keeping an eye on Kirby Pines!
— Written by resident, Joan Dodson