Our Story

Join us on our walk down memory lane (Be prepared for a long walk. We’ve been blessed to have a lot of years together!)  . . .

Larry: I remember when you came up to me during the Jesus Movement of the 1970s at Urbana Assembly of God. You called me by name, but I had no idea who you were. You reminded me that we had been on a ski trip together 4 years earlier!

Carol: You did look like a deer in headlights, but off we went on what has become an amazing ride together. I remember the excitement of finding the 14 acres of land that we eventually called Raintree Woods and developed into a beautiful subdivision.

Larry: What I recall is that you worked tirelessly helping me clear the land, put in a road, and design the Frank Lloyd Wright-style house we would build there. Then one week when you were out of town in June of 1978, God told me very clearly to ask you to marry me.

Carol: You caught me so off guard when you asked me, but even more so when you said we should get married in only 2 weeks in Raintree Woods! But, with the help of our friend, Donna Livingston, we pulled off a beautiful wedding. I loved the huge wooden cross you made and hung from that huge oak tree.

   

Larry: I was so surprised that my best buddy from high school, Jim Beaty, could come perform the ceremony and that our parents and so many friends could join us on such short notice. And, having the reception in the area where our home would later be built was so cool.

Carol: You spent a lot of evenings after work building that house, but what a blessing that May in 1980 when we finally moved in. The almost 20 years in our Raintree home gave us enough memories to last us the rest of our lives.

Larry: One of the highlights of our time there for me was when my “little” brother, Keith, came from Washington to help me build the 40-foot swing bridge I designed to cross the stream in our woods. I’ll never forget that.

Carol: I think about all the gatherings and parties we had: our house blessing, the 50s Sock Hop, the Baseball Fund Raiser for a Youth for Christ (YFC) volunteer, the M*A*S*H party, the Red Barn dinners, the YFC dinner for 90+ kids, Super Bowl parties, our church’s women’s group slumber party, Bible Studies, not to mention the many birthday and Christmas parties, especially the times during the visits from my mom and dad. We certainly know how to throw a birthday party!

Larry: And, what about the cookouts for your algebra and geometry classes? Those were great times and then to think of all the people who came to stay with us. There were so many out-of-town friends, but also people we didn’t even know before they came through our door: the King’s Kids group from Youth With A Mission, Yoko Ono’s first husband and their daughter, the missionaries that came to speak with Maranatha Ministries, and some we’ve still never met who stayed in our home when we were out of town!

 

Carol: One of my sweetest memories is the Saturday morning you came home with a little bundle stuffed in your jacket and presented me with our cocker spaniel, Casey. She was a 14-year light in our lives and SO smart!

   

Larry: One of the best memories for me was in 1991 when I dressed up in my tuxedo t-shirt and presented you with your letter from the White House announcing your Presidential Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics. Being with you for a week in D.C. celebrating your honor and being with President Bush in the Rose Garden was incredible. The work with your class of twenty 7th graders on writing their own textbook earned you that well-deserved award.

 

Carol: How about the time you tried out for the Olympic Baseball team when you were 42 years old? And, you finished in the middle of the pack in your tryout region! Those young guys had no idea what to think. I like it when you tell people you got beat out of the 1st base position that year by Mark McGuire!! And, speaking of sports, how about ALL the University of Illinois basketball and football games we attended with yummy tailgate parties?

   

Larry: Not to mention all the plays and concerts that came through Champaign-Urbana. But, as much as we played in our Raintree home, we did a lot of work, too, and much of it outside our “regular jobs” in business in education! Our work with Dr. Ken Hill developing the Success in School course for middle and high school students was so rewarding. Then teaming up to create, launch, and manage our Prime Presentations seminar business to serve K-12 math and science teachers was worth all the hours we put into it. The fact that we had 21 presenters within our group and did workshops in the U.S., Canada, and England still amazes me.

 

Carol: Something you suggested that touched my heart and changed our lives was the purchase of our condo at the Grand Coquina in Daytona Beach for my mom and dad to use for the months they continued to come down from Georgia. Even though my mom died in 1997, only 10 months after we were able to move in, we still made some beautiful memories with her in that short period, especially during the construction and decorating phase!

 Larry: I suppose the fact that your dad loved Daytona so much and didn’t want to be at the condo without your mom is what encouraged us to go ahead and move to Daytona from Illinois full-time in 1999. That was such a great decision for us. And now we’ve lived in Daytona Beach longer than we lived in Raintree Woods. 

Carol: Let’s not forget about our idyllic time in Lake Oswego, Oregon for those 2½ years. What an adventure to be able to live in the Pacific Northwest for a while and make such long-lasting friends there.

Larry: Life here at the beach, especially with all the childhood memories you have here, has been so good for us. The two churches we’ve attended have brought such rich teaching, spiritual growth, and good friends. Some friends bring out the weird in us, too!

I love our pickleball group and I know how much you love boogie boarding! And, what a ride we’ve had with our friends in the condo in the aftermath of the destructive 2022 hurricanes!

Carol: I keep thinking about the opportunities you’ve had to get involved with ministries here. The support you gave the bikers for the American Bible Society’s She’s My Sister fundraising ride from Florida to Maine enriched the lives of both the bikers and the women of the Congo!

Then came your work with Creating Jobs. I loved going with you on your trips to Honduras. You made such a difference in the lives of the new entrepreneurs by helping them become profitable and to hire more employees.

Larry: I think you’ll agree that one of our greatest joys is mentoring the many young people in our lives. We came to Florida with our doggie as our child, but now have 15 mentees who are true “sons” and “daughters.” What a blessing, especially when the tables are turned and they mentor us!

Carol: Something that truly touched my heart was watching you become the best of buddies with my dad after you invited him to live with us in 2011. What a joy for him to spend his last 5 years being able to look out at his beloved Daytona Beach from our 12th-floor window.

Larry: I will never forget how he sat us down with us a few months before he died and told us that his inheritance was ours, but with one condition. We were to spend his money only on fun and traveling, no bill paying! I guess we’ve stayed true to his wishes, haven’t we?

Carol: Absolutely. Including our travels before that, we’ve managed to travel to 66 countries, all 7 continents since 2017, and we visited our 50th state in 2022. What a legacy Dad left us! Visiting our Compassion International girls in Haiti and Colombia was so rewarding. And, remember how Pastor Jesse said that Jesus hijacked our safari trip to Africa and turned it into a missions trip? We were so blessed to meet and pray for a number of  African families, who remain our friends today.

Larry: And, there are so many others, too, from all parts of the world! Being active at Christ Church Port Orange has been such a privilege, too. Serving as the hosts of the JOY (Jesus, Others, and You) Group for over 5 years allowed us to meet so many wonderful friends in the 55+ bracket!

 

And, now your ministry to the Living Forward widows is “expanding our territory” even more. What a fun and incredible group of ladies!

Carol: Can you believe at this stage of the game, we’re becoming published authors? We have worked in so many team endeavors, but this is among the most satisfying. To think that In Search of My Heart is finally a reality and that we have In Search of My Soul to anticipate, and maybe more books in the In Search series, is truly amazing.

Larry: I guess we’d better get back to work!

Click: In-Search-of-My-Heart to BUY NOW!

*We encourage you to click “Larry’s Story” and “Carol’s Story,” if you haven’t already, to learn more about our early lives before we were married.

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McGehe Books
McGehe Books
Larry and Carol McGehe teamed up to create "In Search of My Heart" as a labor of love for their reading audience. This story was born in the middle of the night after a Bible Study with friends and has become one of the most intense and rewarding projects the McGehes have ever undertaken. Their prayer is that through Miriam’s story, readers will be challenged, inspired, and encouraged in their journey of faith.