Steve Wouldn’t Do a Thing, Would He?

Marcia MacGregor, Easter 1966, Engagement

Marcia MacGregor, Easter 1966, Engagement

For our home life, Christ was very much at the center. Between that and the [Newton] Presbyterian Church, which is very Evangelical in nature, I [Marcia, Steve’s wife] just considered that as such a basic foundation for me, for my own life, from the time that I can remember anything. I grew up there.

Uncle Bob was in seminary at Gordon Divinity School and was doing a practicum at the Newton Presbyterian Church. He was—at the time I was in junior high—he was our youth group . . . he wasn’t a youth pastor, but he was a youth. . . .

[Steve]: Director. Facilitator.

Youth facilitator.

I was in ninth grade [1955/6] on this one meeting evening. He invited a good friend of his at Gordon, Russ Reinhardt, who was blind, to come and give his testimony. It so happened that a man by the name of Steve Duncan, a freshman in college at the same time as Russ, was his roommate. He came along to provide Russ transportation and to help him. Marcia MacGregor was sitting in this room. In walks this college freshman with wavy brown hair, just a hunk of a guy, handsome as could be, and she thought she was born five years too late.

Fast forward eight years. Uncle Bob and I were at a Presbyterian youth camp during the summer, counseling together at that camp. He just casually said, “You know, we’d like to get you together with my brother.”

I knew that Bob had a lot of brothers. I was just trying to figure out: is this the same brother that I saw back eight years ago. I couldn’t quite figure it out.

Anyway, sure enough, we had a double date together. They showed up with Steve. There he was, this handsome man, but I have to say he didn’t know how to dress. Maybe he didn’t know how to dress. Maybe that wasn’t his fault totally because the money was not flowing. Evidently somebody had died and that person’s clothes got passed onto Steve. Anyway, I was impressed by everything else except the way he. . . .

[Stephanie?]: God was preparing him to be a missionary.

[Steve]: I’m still wearing the same clothes.

Now at the time, that year I had gone to the University of Massachusetts to do some graduate studies in German. I had studied German language as my major in college and I wanted to do graduate studies, so I was out there. I came home during Christmas break and that’s when we had this date, so I wasn’t used to living at home at all anymore. We went out and Bob and Polly—we went to see The Sound of Music all together—eventually Bob and Polly went home.

Steve took me home. We sat out, in front of my house at 46 Slade Street in Belmont for I don’t know how long, talking. I just knew that I had met the man I was going to marry. We just shared a lot of things, what our life was, what our hopes were for our lives. Both he and I felt that God was calling us to the mission field. We knew that. We shared those kinds of things. We talked about, just about everything. I mean, I was looking for a husband. He was looking for a wife. We were cutting to the chase.

Anyway, so then I don’t know what time it was in the morning at this point, but I walked into my house and there was my father. “Where, on earth, have you been?!” He had been calling Polly and Bob and worried sick.

[Steve]: Oh, boy!

[Virginia, laughing]: Did he call your cell phone?

No! There were no cell phones!

[Heidi]: Aunt Polly was like, “Oh, no, Steve wouldn’t do a thing?! Would he? Oh, they just met! It’s a blind date!”

We were outside. The car was parked right in front, on the curb, if he had looked out the window. But you know, I wasn’t used to having to think about oh, somebody’s inside waiting for me. I had lived away from home for so long. That just totally busted my bubble, you know, because I was walking on a cloud that night when I came home that night.

Anyway, Steve went to my dad and apologized. Right away, that went up, Steve went up in his mind. Then we were engaged, basically, on Easter Sunday, the following Easter Sunday. That was Christmas and we got. . . . Steve went to my dad and asked for my hand in marriage, so that really took him all the way.

My dad said to me, “You’ll go places with that guy.” That’s what he said. So we’ve been places.

story told by Marcia (Steve’s wife) to the family reunion gathering on January 10, 2014 with questions and comments from Eric Kindberg (Lee’s son), Virginia Gorman (Lee’s daughter), Steve, and Steve’s daughters Heidi and Stephanie; recorded and transcribed by Dawn Duncan Harrell (Steve’s daughter)

Can you add to the story? Please do. Write in the box below. (You may need to click “Leave a Reply” above to make the box, name, and address fields appear.)

  • We have Betty’s courtship and engagement story. Anybody want to relay what you recall of the others?
  • Mom/Marcia, on which campus of the University of Massachusetts did you do your German graduate studies? Were they completed? What year was that? What was the degree?
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2 thoughts on “Steve Wouldn’t Do a Thing, Would He?

  1. HnBSMITH@aol.com

    Dear Dawn, You are certainly performing a monumental and so important task. We enjoy reading each one. After reading the last one I was just sort of cruising the site. I had seen all the names stacked on each other. I saw the name of the illustrious Harley and saw that it was “active” I punched him (or the name) I discovered that the name did not lead to anything relative to anything in particular. Tried a few others but I didn’t get the relationship. Bravo. Keep going Uncle Harley

  2. Marcia L. Duncan

    So I did my graduate studies in German literature at the Amherst site of the U of MASS and that would have been 1965 -1966. I finished the class work for a master’s and actually took the final exam later on which included an hours’ conversation about German literature. The oral part of the exam was a dismal failure as I did exactly what one should never do: introduce a topic that you really don’t know anything about. I did that and of course, the professors wanted me to elaborate more and I couldn’t. They wanted me to come back and do it over. I think I was already married at this point and we were planning to go to Italy for Steve to study medicine and thought I probably wouldn’t be able to do that. They told me I could go to their partnering university in Germany to do it. I never did. So I never got my degree.

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