Bio & Pictures from 40th Reunion
Update Christmas 2009
Back from Haiti January 29, 2010
Update New Year's 2015
George's deployment to Liberia with Heart to Heart International out of Lenexa, Kansas
Does Betty look like her granddaughter Lindley?
After graduating from David H. Hickman H.S., I, along with several others from our class, did six months of active duty with the Army National Guard. On return from Fort Gordon, Georgia, I traveled to India to spend six months with my parents who were working there through a University of Missouri exchange program. Returning to Columbia in the summer of ’64, I began college in the Engineering School, graduating in the summer of ’68. I married Betty Stout that September, two days before starting Medical School at the University of Missouri School of Medicine. Betty taught English at Hickman during my medical school years. I received my MD degree in 1973.
We then moved with our two children, Christin and Jon, and I began my training in Family Medicine in Fairfax, Virginia outside of Washington, DC. Upon completion of residency, I returned to Columbia to join the faculty at the medical school where I stayed for two years. In 1976, we returned to Virginia, to Leesburg, also just outside of Washington, DC, where I went into private practice and where Betty and I lived for sixteen years while raising our children.
In 1993, I left private practice and returned to teaching, joining the faculty at East Carolina University School of Medicine. At ECU, I directed the Department of Family Medicine’s medical student teaching programs for two years, then directed their residency training program for four years. In 1999, with both of our grown children married, Betty and I accepted positions with the Mission Service of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and were assigned to eighteen months at a small mission hospital in Embangweni, Malawi, in south central Africa. I was one of two physicians serving a population of 100,000. Betty and I became very involved in the battle against AIDS, starvation, and poverty in this extremely friendly but destitute country. Since our return to the US, we have continued to work towards helping those we came to know in Malawi and have returned each year to provide continued guidance and support.
Back to North Carolina, I initially worked for a Community Health Center in the Sand Hills region of the state, but since we found that we spent almost every weekend traveling to our condominium on the Atlantic Ocean beach at Pine Knoll Shores, we decided in June to leave Southern Pines and live and work at the beach. I am doing Urgent Care / Primary Care in an office in Cape Carteret, NC and in off time, Betty and I continue to travel and look for ways to carry on the work against AIDS and poverty in Africa. I’m also into fitness – biking, kayaking, swimming, whatever is physically demanding and out of doors.
Our two children are near us. Our daughter Christin, the mother of our two “gifted, if not talented” grandchildren, lives with her physician husband in Fayetteville, NC and our son, Jon, and his wife have just returned from a year in Africa where they conducted HIV/AIDS research for his dissertation in Medical Anthropology.
Though my Dad passed away in 1995, my Mom is still
enjoying life in Kirksville, Missouri, near Joyce, my sister. Until last
year, we still had a “home” to visit in Columbia. Since we no longer have
ties to Columbia, we look forward, instead, to seeing friends and renewing
relationships at the reunion in October of this year.
January 29, 2010
EVEN THE BEST
HOUSES DIDN'T SURVIVE
AT THE RYAN EPPS
Home for a 2012 North Carolina Christmas,
George and I are doing well. We love our townhouse, we love Durham, and
we love living close to family. But the year found us traveling almost
as much as we were home . . . In January, we did an Eco-tour, sponsored
by the Sister Communities of San Ramon, Nicaragua, whose parent
organization is here in Durham. We stayed on a coffee plantation picking
and processing alongside the workers. Next, we had a home-stay with a
wonderful family in San Ramon. Fast friends forever, we hope we see the
Matute family again. On to the countryside, including the city of
Granada. all was made even more wonderful because my sister-in-law,
Cathy Smaha from Denver, came along . . . George was away for the month
of March doing a relief mission near the border of Kenya and Somalia.
The United Nations HCR (high commission for refugees) has stations that
assist with the migratory flow out of Somalia by providing transitional
housing and food. George worked at the make-shift health center in
Dadaab . . . We headed to Colorado the 1st of April, driving Miss Daisy,
our granddog. Christin and family finally found a house that would work
well for them and we arrived with Daisy just minutes after their moving
van pulled out. We helped for a few days with the shoving of boxes and
hanging of pictures, then met Jon and family for a week of Spring Break
(second grader Nelle’s) skiing in Breckenridge. Of course, the Bellians
drove over to Breckenridge to be with us, but they had already had their
Boulder Break the week before . . . Home just two weeks after the long
drive back to NC (including a stop or two in Missouri), we got that call
that you hate to get, but this time as grandparents: Lindley had been in
a very serious mountain biking accident with facial injuries,
concussion, punctured lung, and broken back. Back to Boulder, it was
hard seeing her have her 16th birthday in a hospital bed – but, guess
what? She is doing great and doing everything a junior in high school
does, including skiing . . . In June, George and I took our turn with
Little George, having him for a couple of weeks while Mary Bennett did
her Constraint Therapy camp management and Nelle did the camp . . . But,
before the month was over, George headed to the border of Uganda and
Congo doing another UNHCR stint, this time in Mbarara.. Not nearly as
dangerous or deprived as the experience in March, he was glad to have
helped with training of inexperienced local health centre workers . . .
In July, Christin, Cam, and Lindley came to NC for Lindley’s previously
scheduled 3-week stay at Duke TIP program. Yup! She did it and it was
incredibly reassuring to all of us that she would be ready to head back
to school in late August. Christin and Cam and Cam’s friend Eric from
Boulder spent days at the beach house on Bald Head Island . . . On the
28th, we all headed back to Denver for the wedding of our niece, Sarah
Stout to Kyle Hansen. It was a wonderful Colorado wedding and since we
were there, why not do the Bicycle Tour of Colorado with grandson,
Cameron, who has developed into a wonderful competitive road and
cyclocross biker. He and George did 515 miles of road biking in 6 days.
And, fast-breaking news is that he is one of five “stagiaires” picked up
by Horizon Organic / Panache Development Cycling Team for the upcoming
year. . . September provided another family gathering, this time in
Charleston, for great-niece Lindsey Stout to marry Bill Lindquist of KC.
(We loved the Missouri connection.) The family stayed together on the
beach and enjoyed Little George’s 3rd birthday, our 44th anniversary and
George’s 67th all the same weekend . . . October 4 we headed to Peru for
the most amazing trip we have ever taken. We did a walking holiday with
an outfit out of London – simply the best as it was well organized and
included spending part of every day hiking. The photo on the card is day
10 of our 20 day holiday, taken in the Sacred Valley prior to our hike
up to the Sun Gate outside Machu Picchu -- all of the trip was fabulous
. . . We enjoyed Thanksgiving with Mary Bennett’s family in Greensboro
and we are here for Christmas with the young Santa Believers!! . . .
Then we head to Boulder to celebrate the Eve as well as Christin’s big
day! . . . Back home, we’ll get our things together as we are headed to
South Africa and Malawi on January 30th. While there, we will visit
Lillian, the young girl that we and so many others have helped through
medical school and residency (her last year in Capetown), and Reg, her
doctor-husband, and son Uchdami George (yes, my George is required to
pay for Uchi’s education as he bears George’s name); then we will go to
Embangweni to assist Ishmael, the medical officer, so that he and his
family can take leave. We are not raising funds for this trip but we
will be walking the “path”. If anyone has an extra $20 bill for path
money -- before we Americans fall off the cliff together -- be assured
we will find the best opportunity to share your gift with another, as we
have done in past years . . . In closing, enjoy your family and your
community, be thankful for good health and available healthcare in this
country, and wish for peace all over this world. Until we write our
Christmas letter again.
Vicki Vaught & Betty - Lindley