Wilcox family celebrates 50 years

Sunday, August 17, 2014
Leo and Barbara Wilcox (Submitted photo)

I used to live in Bell Buckle and my family is still there.

Sunday, Aug. 17, is my mom and dad's 50th anniversary (praise God!) and we will be in town to celebrate. They attend Bright Temple Church of God in Christ in Shelbyville and they live in Covered Bridge Estates in Bell Buckle.

Here is their story.

Leo and Barbara Wilcox met when they were just 14 and 12. My dad (Leo) says that he knew from the first time he met her that he was going to marry my mom. She, however, did not share his sentiment! (She was only 12 years old!) They were married on Aug. 17, 1964 at a tiny chapel in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.

Leo and Barbara dedicated their lives to serving the community. Leo worked as a California Highway patrol motorcycle officer and Barbara worked in retail at Costco. But they did their real service away from work. Their selflessness was demonstrated over and over by their willingness to support family and friends by opening their home to those in need. On their off time, you would often find Leo volunteering at the children's hospital or visiting the elderly or veterans' homes. Barbara would spend her time volunteering at local halfway houses or with the local parks. They supported various organizations, including Greenpeace, the Audubon Society, Catholic Charities, Habitat for Humanity, The National Parks Service, Save the Children and many others. Most recently they give their time to the church and their family. Both of their children and even grandchildren have taken up their love of community service. Their son Leo is a Shelbyville firefighter and their daughter, Donna, went on a mission trip to Honduras and serves on various community boards. Their grandson Dylan recently returned from a mission trip to South Africa and his brother, Dustyn, has founded two nonprofits to help children. Finally, their youngest grandchild Mallory is already demonstrating a heart for service as she shows interest in helping other kids. Their lives have been a blessing to many, and in their own words, they are blessed!