Rutherford Weekly

February 09, 2023

Rutherford Weekly - Shelby NC

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ISSUE NO. 6 • February 9, 2023 ISSUE NO. 6 • February 9, 2023 • • • 828-248-1408 • 828-248-1408 •Motorcycles, 4 Wheelers •Golf Carts •Quick, Easy Cash Loans •Quality Merchandise •Best Prices: Gold, Silver, Diamonds •Large Selection Home Appliances •Layaways •Much, Much More B&D'S THRIFT & LOAN THRIFT & LOAN 596 S. Broadway St., Forest City 828-245-3551 Mon-Fri 8-5:45 • Sat 8:30-4 Major Credit Cards Accepted Your Valentine's Day Headquarters! Large selection of jewelry! Very low prices! Gifts for him or her! HAPPY VALENTINE'S HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! DAY! Just before Valentine's Day, Just before Valentine's Day, couples share stories couples share stories Our 31 st Year • Over 25,000 Weekly Readers These three couples featured today have been married more than 50 years and share their stories of half-century of marriage with our readers. They also have a connection with the Rutherford County Senior Center. A BARBER AND AN EDUCATOR MARRIED, TOGETHER NEARLY 54 YEARS; THEY HAD A GOOD FOUNDATION JAMES AND TINNIE DAWKINS A NURSE AND WARD CLERK FIND LOVE AT THE HOSPITAL THOMAS AND CAROLYN BAILEY NOT EVEN A NEW CAR OR PAID COLLEGE BILLS COULD KEEP THEM FROM MARRYING Article by Jean Gordon STORIES CONTINUE ON PAGE 14. Thomas Bailey and Carolyn Harmon fi rst became acquainted at Rutherford Hospital in 1971 when the young couple was working there. Carolyn was a nursing assistant and Thomas was a ward clerk. They are Rutherford County natives. Right after high school Carolyn began school at Cleveland Technical Institute where she studied nursing and became a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) at Rutherford where she would stay until her retirement. Thomas joined the Army after high school and was a Combat Medic in the Vietnam War in 1968-69. When he came home he went to work at the hospital. Some of the couple's co-workers thought they would make a good couple and introduced them. Sure enough, they began dating. Carolyn remembers all too well a date with Thomas in 1971 when they were "kissing" and Thomas' car windows fogged up. Right then and there in the heat of the moment Carolyn said she told Thomas, 'Nobody is going to have either me or you, so we might as well get married." Whether it was a bonafi de wedding proposal or not, on August 5, 1972 the couple was married at Concord Baptist Church and honeymooned in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. "I knew he was a hard worker. I knew he had taken care of his mother when she was sick," Carolyn began. In fact before Carolyn met Thomas, she had helped take care of his mother. "We also both love gospel music, country music and we like to travel," Carolyn said. The couple didn't have children but are proud of the 'four-legged" pets they had during their married life. Their dogs were Angel, Red Rover and Dewey. Today they have a tabby cat, Kitty May. "We're not disappointed God didn't send children our way," Carolyn said, however, they adopted two children through faith-based organizations around the world and through the years supported the children fi nancially and through cards and letters. They adopted Marie from Africa in 2009 when she was 11 years old. Later they adopted a 15-year-old boy from Haiti. Though at a distance, they prayed for them and spoke of them often. They were their children, too. When the couple wasn't on the job, Carolyn was a Brownie Troop leader in Rutherfordton. James Dawkins and Tinnie Hooker Dawkins will celebrate 54 years of marriage in July. James, 85, and Tinnie, 83, dated at least six years before walking down the aisle in her home church in Sanford, North Carolina, in 1968 to pledge their love to each other. The couple met in Spindale where Tinnie began her teaching career in 1961 at Carver High School. Tinnie's friend was dating James' brother, Dudley Dawkins, and they were introduced. James spent a few years in the Air Force before coming back home to Rutherford County. After marrying, the couple moved to New Jersey where James was a cook in a restaurant. He later went to barber school in Philadelphia where the couple lived for a while. When Tinnie got a job at East Rutherford High School during that time, she returned to Rutherford County where she remained at East until her retirement. After graduating from barber school, James joined his wife back in Rutherford County. He spent his barber career in Spartanburg. He retired last year. While Tinnie was teaching school at East Rutherford, James commuted for his Monday-Saturday job. "We learned you can't do this on your own," James said. It is the blessings of God and their faith in God that has brought them to where they are today, James said. Their fi rst child was born in 1969. The couple raised three daughters and one son and put all four through college. Two daughters have doctorate degrees and are educators. Another daughter is in the medical fi eld in Winston-Salem and their son works in prison ministry for the US Government. When teenagers Ricky Green and June Hawkins traveled to Gaffney, South Carolina on May 2, 1969, to get married, their parents made the trip with them and offered support. However, had their respective parents gotten their way, 19-year-old Ricky and 18-year-old June would have waited a few years before getting married. "They bribed us," June said. Her parents Ronnie and Linda Hawkins offered her a brand new car of her choice if she'd wait. Ricky's parents, Dwight and Peg Green, offered to pay his way through college. "I didn't need a car, I had my brother's car," June said. Ricky went to Isothermal Community College and stayed home. Since the two teens were in love and didn't want to wait they were married on a Thursday afternoon, returned back home so June could return to school at Chase High School where she would later graduate on May 28. Ricky, an East Rutherford graduate, was employed at GF Industries. After a weekend honeymoon to Myrtle Beach, the couple lived with her parents in Sandy Mush while she fi nished school and he worked. Ricky and June met when she was 16 years old. Her brother was in the military so she drove his car to visit her sister-in-law, a neighbor of Ricky's family. Ricky was cutting the grass one day when he saw June. After getting her telephone number from a family member, "Well the rest is history" Ricky said. Their fi rst date was to Chesnee to buy fi reworks on Halloween evening. Following their wedding in Gaffney, the couple's parents hosted a reception at Gardo's. It wasn't long after they were married they began to have children, "right off the bat," she said. On May 9, 1970, they welcomed their fi rst daughter April (Yelton), then Crystal (Penson) and fi nally Lynn (Brooks). From their daughters and sons-in-law came their six grandchildren — four boys and two girls. "We see them and we enjoy them," said Ricky. In fact, the couple say their marriage has remained strong all these years because of togetherness. All holidays are spent together and the families also go camping together. When the girls were small, Ricky and June didn't go anywhere without their girls.

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