If you’re wondering if you might want to volunteer to join in on a trip to help at the orphanage, sadly, it couldn’t be anytime soon. Terry tells us that Haiti has gotten too dangerous for their typical visits: “Port-au-Prince is 80 percent controlled by warring gangs. You can’t go in now. I’ve gone recently but we land on a grass strip in the mountains.” But, if you want to help the effort, you can donate at UCIHaiti.org.
We also wanted to learn more about Terry and his life before retirement. He was the son of a pastor of non-denominational churches, and the family moved ten times before he was thirteen. He went to high school in Burwell, Nebraska and then moved to Norfolk, NE to jump into working. That’s where his life took its first big change, when he met Shari, a first meeting right out of a romcom movie. Terry sets the scene:
“I was something of what we used to call a ‘gear head,’ someone who loved cars. Her car broke down right in front of my house. I got it running.”
Asked for specifics, Terry thinks it was an Opel, but does clearly remember the mechanical problem: “It was moisture in the distributor cap. Not a big deal.”
But it turned into a big deal because it became a relationship that changed the trajectory of Terry’s life. “Shari was in college, and I hadn’t gone,” Terry recalled. “So, I’d be complaining about how I couldn’t get the jobs I really wanted because they required a college degree. Shari told me to ‘quit whining and get enrolled.’ I told her that I was too old, that I’d be 28 by the time I graduated. She said, ‘You’re going to be 28 anyway – wouldn’t you rather be 28 with a degree?’” Terry saw the logic of that, got his degree, and then into a management training program with a bank.
Asked how the couple came to have a home at The Resort, Terry said, “Shari is from Baltimore and wanted to live near the water. So, when we retired, we bought a place on Storm Lake in the town of Lakeside, Iowa. Our next store neighbor there is Mike Berkland, who has a place in The Resort, and we came to visit him in Arizona.” If you’re reading this, then you know what happened next: they wanted to have a place of their own to come back to.
Lastly, let’s end where we began, with the Pricketts’ daughter, Caitlyn. (That’s her with her kids in the photo below; however, she just added another, a little girl born a premie at 1 lb 8 oz, but now up to around 12 lbs.) Caitlyn is still doing good works, having made a series of visits to West Bank of Jerusalem, but is now back living in Iowa. Then, to round things out, the final photos are of the Pricketts son and family, and (B&W photo) their younger daughter and family, for a total of ten grandkids.