North Georgia Elder Law - June 2020

Kevin’s Peace of Mind (770) 503-1022

June 2020

Happy Father’s Day, Brothers! Kevin’s Tribute to theTharpe and Stidham Fathers

I feel very blessed to have amazing people on both sides of my family, including the men inmy family. In past issues of this newsletter, you have met my grandfather, my father, andmy father- in-law. This Father’s Day, I want to honor four men who have a very important role inmy and my family’s lives: Kenny Tharpe, JeffTharpe, Jeff Stidham, and Christopher Stidham. Each of these men are called“Uncle”by my daughter Callie, but they are my brothers or brothers-in-law.

sitting in a deer stand or a fishing boat, Kenny is the type of person who needs to be outdoors or doing things with his hands. He is also good with people, as evidenced by his recent election to the Moreland City Council. Kenny graduated from Auburn University, where he met his wife Jeannie. He has two kids, Kaleigh and Joel. Kenny is also a grandfather to two grandsons, Jack and Aiden. JeffTharpe is my youngest brother. Jeff is married to Gina and a father to Colby, Carson, and Kyndal. Youmight remember the October 2019 newsletter where I sharedmy memories and admiration for my baby brother. In that newsletter, I talked about Jeff and his relationship with his two sons. Colby and Carson aren’t Jeff’s biological children; their biological father died when the boys were very young. I really admire the way Jeff opened his heart to them and that he has always treated them like his own boys. One special experience Jeff shared with both Colby and Carson occurred while he was a vice principal at the local high school. Jeff had the honor of not just shaking their hands and hugging them

He played catcher on the inaugural baseball team for LaGrange College, and he once considered going professional and trying out for the Chicago Cubs. Jeff took his baseball skills and love for the game and became a baseball coach not only for his boys’baseball teams while they were growing up but also as a community coach for the baseball team at a local Christian school. Jeff is also active in his church and his community, on top of being super active in his family— I admire that very much. Jeff will soon become a father-in-law, as his oldest son Nicholas is gettingmarried on June 30. Christopher Stidham is Missy’s younger brother, and he is actually the reason I met Missy. The youth pastor at the church I was attending had askedme if I’d consider teaching the youth classes on Sunday for boys near high-school age. Chris was in eighth grade at that time and was a part of that group. Christopher and I soon became great friends. We went fishing, hunting, and played ball together, and eventually, he told me, “Hey, I have a sister youmight want tomeet!” He said he just wanted to introduce us so I could spendmore time with him, but he didn’t seem tomind that Missy and I got along so well. Today, Chris is married to Katrina and has three boys: Brady, Evan, and Maddox. As a fun-loving guy with a great sense of humor and a big heart, Chris uses these traits to be a great father to his sons. These four are some of the most faithful, dependable, strong, and compassionate men I know. I look up to each of them, even if I’m technically older than most of them. Guys, your amazing work for your families and others doesn’t go unnoticed. You may be related to me by birth or by marriage, but all of you are my brothers and my friends.

As fathers, all of these men have been sources of great inspiration and support, and they are leaders not only in their families, but also on the athletic field, in their churches, and in their communities. I’ve seen my brothers each struggle with their fair share of work, health, or other issues in their lives. I have also seen each of them grow stronger in their faith, and they always seem to stay focused on prioritizing their families. No matter what may be happening in their own individual lives, they always make sure they’re present in their families’ lives. Kenny Tharpe is my oldest brother, and he lives in Moreland, Georgia (hometown of Lewis Grizzard). Whether it’s working on highway construction jobs, buildingmy parents’home in Moreland, or

as they graduated but also handing them their diplomas. For a dad, that’s really special. Jeff and I also share the privilege and struggle of two dads raising teenage girls at the same time. We plan to go on a double date with our daughters to see“Hamilton” in August —we’re very much looking forward to that. Jeff sings beautifully and is a leader in his church choir, somaybe he’ll sing some“Hamilton” for us until then! Jeff Stidham is my wife, Missy’s, oldest brother. Jeff is married toWanda, and they have four children, Nicholas, Zachary, Maegan, and Ashley. Besides Wanda and his family, Jeff’s other love is baseball.

Happy Father’s Day!

-J. Kevin Tharpe | 1

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