Tag Archives: JAARS

Kathy Breaks Up with Allan at the Wedding


Josh, Kathy, Joe, Kim, Allan, Katrina, Loma Linda, Colombia,  ca. 1994

[Kathy]: I’m Kathy. I’m the fourth of the family there, also born at Yarina. All of us were born there except Gail, so we always said she was the odd the one—ha!

[Gail]: She was adopted.

[Kathy]: She’s the adopted one.

[Dawn]: Gail, where were you born?

[Gail]: I was born in Newton, Massachusetts.

[Marcia]: Oh, Newton Wellesley Hospital?

[Gail]: I don’t know if that was the hospital. Is that the only hospital in Newton?

[Steve]: That’s the main one.

[Marcia]: Yeah, that’s the major one.

[Gail]: I guess.

[Kathy]: So what am I supposed to say? Just kind of a little background? Um, so yeah, so almost all the years, all my years were in Peru—school years—except kindergarten, when we were on furlough in New Jersey, and my eighth grade year were on furlough. That’s when. . . .

No my kindergarten year was when you [Eric] had the accident, the car accident. My eighth grade year was when you and Bruce were going to start in college and that’s why our family moved back. So we had very few times in the States before. Then my senior year of high school, we actually moved to Colombia and I thought that was the worst thing ever, to have to leave. But I had a great time in Colombia, too, after I adjusted. Then came to the States for college in Dallas Bible College and then transferred over to Bryan College in Tennessee. That’s where I met my husband Allan.


Allan and Kathy Courtright, March 13, 1981

So Allan and I met at college. I was playing volleyball and he was like the student volleyball coach. And so we made all of our away trips, away game trips. He was there with us and we got to know each other and got married.

Actually, I have to back that up. He came to Dallas when Eric and Mary Lynn got married—poor guy. Met all the Duncans. What?

[Gail]: You broke up, too, didn’t you.

[Kathy]: I broke up with him, while he was there at the wedding. I mean, there in Dallas for the wedding time, not at the wedding itself, but I guess I just got scared off. Too serious, too fast. It was very, very mean of me to do that, but he met the whole Duncan clan and he still decided to propose later on.

We got back together at school and so, um, after he graduated, that summer, he came down to Colombia, kind of like the Eric and Mary Lynn thing you guys did. But we ended up getting engaged there at Loma Linda in Colombia. Then I finished school and got married the next year [March 13, 1981].

Soon after we got married, we joined Wycliffe and went through all the training and all that.

Doug, the brother between me and Virginia, Virginia and I—he was killed in a motorcycle accident when Kim was just born, so that was thirty years ago, last month. And we were doing our support-raising.

Oh, by the way, I was born in June of 1959. I think you were writing the dates down.

[Dawn]: So you were here when he was killed, in the States?

[Kathy]: We were actually in Waxhaw. We were in Tennessee at my Dad’s parents’ place. We were traveling around doing deputation, raising our support. We found out when we were in Tennessee. The next day, two days later, we were coming here anyway as a planned thing. It was really hard because we were speaking in a church the night we found out he was killed. We were doing a slide show. Allan was doing the speaking and I was clicking the slides. As Allan was speaking, we came across a picture of Doug and I was like aaaaagh. Anyway, I won’t go into that. But we came here [Waxhaw] soon afterward and we were with friends of his and family. Otherwise, we didn’t really know anybody. The others got to go down to Loma Linda, but I didn’t have a passport with me.

Loma Linda was where he was killed on a motorcycle after traveling from Dallas through Central America. The night he got to Loma Linda, just a freak thing that he was killed. He lived to the next morning, but then he died.

[Eric]: The neat thing about all that was when he arrived, on the morning he arrived, I guess, he had lunch with the family and started telling the story of his travels all the way from Texas all the way down to Colombia and so they recorded it all. They got it all on tape.

[Kathy]: Mom turned on the tape recorder.

[Eric]: So the very, almost the last hours of his life, he was telling his experiences, laughing and joking. So we’ve got all of that on tape recording.

[Kathy]: It was actually within a few hours because he didn’t arrive until evening, at late afternoon. They had supper. He was telling his experiences at supper. They went out riding right after that with just kids around the center and that’s when that happened.

Anyway, so we were preparing for mission work when we found out about that. And then Allan and I went through the rest of training. We were in Colombia for, assigned to Colombia for eight years of the fifteen years we were with Wycliffe. And then we were here at JAARS Center part of that time. Allan was in charge of—you saw the tour?—Allan was international computer services. He was the director of international computer services for a couple of years after were from Colombia to here.

[Eric]: He actually helped design the building that the IT center was in, the Languages Services Center.

[Kathy]: Language Services Center. I couldn’t remember the title of that building.

Then we ended up, while we were here, and on that assignment, we started. Our kids were in soccer. We did a lot. We volunteered for a professional, all Christian soccer team, which is under Missionary Athletes International. We ended up switching over to that. The last fifteen years, we’ve been with MAI. That’s kind of our ministry background.

story told by Kathy (Lee’s daughter) with interjections by Gail and Eric (Lee’s kids), Steve and Marcia (Steve’s wife), Dawn (Steve’s daughter) to the family reunion gathering on January 11, 2014; 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.)

  • Kathy, what helped you adjust to Colombia?
  • How did the two schools compare?
  • What did you like to do for fun, both at Yarina and then in Colombia, besides ride motorcycles?
  • Did your folks help you choose a college? How did you come to be at Dallas and then to transfer?
  • I’ve guessed at the first photo date. Do you have a better idea of the year?

Family Reunion 2014 Report

Twenty Taylor Albert Duncan descendants gathered in Waxhaw this past weekend (Jan 9–12) to reconnect.Everyone

Highlights and Lowlights

  • Everyone told their stories to the whole group, caught us up, cried, teased, laughed, and listened.
  • We stayed up way too late talking and got less sleep than we wanted.
  • Gloria brought us Taylor Albert Duncan gold (see below “Treasure”).
  • Dawn hogged Allan’s computer all day Saturday to scan.
  • Kathy and Mary Lynn provided delicious food in abundance.
  • Kathy and Kim (with some help) were left with large messes.
  • TJ played the Moonlight Sonata for us in the JAARS Chapel.
  • It rained all day Friday and all day Saturday.
  • Kathy’s house provided a perfect gathering space.
  • The basement flooded on Saturday.
  • Some of us toured JAARS, the Alphabet Museum, and the Mexico Museum together.
  • Some of us got wet trying to find which building the rest of us went into.
  • Those who visited the Carolinas Aviation Museum heard survivors of the Hudson River plane share their stories and answer questions in person. Very cool.
  • Our rental cars got stuck in the muddy ruts outside Kathy’s house.
  • We played Dutch Blitz, rotating players through the teams.
  • Gail and Bruce cheated. Heidi and Virginia won.
  • We worshiped and prayed together on Sunday morning.
  • Colin was the last one to leave on Sunday, so he built a pyramid with our cups.

TJ Playing the Moonlight Sonata in the JAARS ChapelWho Attended

  • From Kathryn’s Family: TJ and his wife Victoria
  • From Lee’s Family: Bruce, Eric and his wife Mary Lynn, Gail, Kathy and her husband Allan and her daughters Kim and Katrina and her son Joe, and Virginia and her husband Bill
  • From Bob’s Family: Colin
  • From Tad’s Family: Gloria and her husband Chris and her son Brett
  • From Steve’s Family: Steve and his wife Marcia and his daughters Dawn, Heidi, Kimberly, and Stephanie

If you weren’t there, we missed you.

Cheating Discussion During Dutch BlitzProposed

We had a great time together and propose another reunion in two years’ time: 2016.

We’ll select perhaps three weekends in 2016. These will be weekends highly likely to be school holidays for most kids. The one with the most votes will become our target.

Several of us volunteered the Chicago Duncans as a hosts. The Chicago Duncans were not in attendance. This is what happens when you don’t come to the Family Reunion. Just sayin’. In the past they themselves have volunteered and Chicago is a direct flight for most of us. Furthermore, there are more houses with potential guest beds between their five family units.

Chicago Duncans, if you are potentially willing, please email, call, or contact me here to discuss this further. We all thank you!

Cup StackTreasure

Chris Boyer, Gloria’s husband, found a bin in Tad and Carol’s house full of Grandpa Taylor’s old documents and photos. I scanned as many of these as I could on Saturday, much thanks to Allan, Kathy’s husband, for allowing me to commandeer their computer and scanner. These are now in my Dropbox. If you would like access to them, send me an email or a message here and I’ll send you the link. You can download them to your own files if you would like permanent access to them. I will keep them in the Dropbox for a limited time only.


Colin and I have put our photos in a common Facebook album if you would like to see them. If you have photos to add, let me know and I’ll make you a “contributor” to that album, so you can upload them. If you do not have a Facebook account, let me know and I’ll tell you how to get a hold of some of the photos.


Many thanks to Kathy and Allan Courtright and Kim, their daughter, whose home we used and who fed us, and to Eric and Mary Lynn Kindberg, who planned our weekend and provided food and other assistance.

Family Reunion

Family Reunion, 1986Are you related to Paul, Kathryn, Wally, Lee, Betty, Bob, Tad or Steve? Then you are invited to a family reunion hosted by Eric and Mary Lynn Kindberg and Kathy and Allan Courtright (Lee’s kids).

Waxhaw, North Carolina

Thursday–Sunday, January 9–12, 2014

  • Thursday, Jan 9: arrive; meals on your own; welcome meeting at 7 pm in hotel
  • Friday, Jan 10: Billy Graham Library outing (round trip 3.5 hours); dinner together in Waxhaw restaurant; evening pictures and family stories in hotel
  • Saturday, Jan 11: Carolinas Aviation Museum outing (plane that landed in Hudson River); cookout at Kathy’s; family and personal updates, more pictures, more fun
  • Sunday, Jan 12: local church with Eric and Mary Lynn or Kathy and Allan; depart

RSVP to Dawn Harrell (Steve’s kid)              

We need ten confirmed attendees by July 31, 2013 to continue planning. Fill in this form, so I know you’re coming. I’m collecting responses. I’ll pass them along to Eric and Kathy.


  • Breakfast: continental in JAARS hotel for a donation
  • Lunch: Thursday and Friday can be purchased on the JAARS Center; Saturday and Sunday in area restaurants
  • Dinner: see above itinerary


RSVP by July 31, 2013 for guaranteed housing in the JAARS guest hotel at the $40/night rate for one or two adults (plus tax). Note if you will share a room and with whom (additional people: $20/adult, $7/child, $56 maximum for families). We will confirm your reservations with you after they are made.

RSVP by December 15, 2013 if you’ll make your own housing arrangements. NB: You may find additional lodging on the JAARS campus. Call 704.843.6130 or see the JAARS website.

Pass this invitation along, so that everyone knows they’re invited. Thanks. Hope to see you there!