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John & Barbara and Lots of Love

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There are neighbors who feud constantly. And then, there are neighbors who are such dear people that they get adopted into the family.

That was the case with John Kirby and Barbara Bowlin. Siblings who lived right next door to us, when we lived in the house that saw our son grow from a preschooler into a formidable young man. (At least, that's what we think)

The first time we noticed that these were special people was shortly after we moved in. Having lived in a town house with built in maintenance (and an association fee that came with it), we didn't have a lawn mower in our vault of tools quite yet. But we learned quickly that a single family home had a different set of homeowner responsibilities altogether.

One day there was an unexpected noise in our yard: the neighbor taking care of our grass on his riding lawn mower. And that was only the beginning.

Barbara and John were always giving, always there, without being overbearing. Not just for us - they helped EVERYBODY they could. And so they had a collection of "lucky" animals: Weenie, a blind dog. Mama, a particularly raggedy cat. Boomie, a dog who could barely walk and with a constant bladder problem. Mr. Stubbs, a black cat who was missing most of his tail.

The list goes on, and over the years, new ones got "found" to replace the ones which passed on.

There was genuine love, and I fondly remember Barbara and John, their other brother James and the animals. Our newfound family.

There is so much more to share about their selfless caring, but it is material for another story, another time.


Posted on 11/13/2016

Submitted by: Ingrid Webster [not eligible for the prize drawing]


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