Weaverville – On 19 October of this year, Rev. Wesley and Shirley Buckner Pike celebrate 62 years of marriage on their way to forever together. While they’ve only been married for 62 years, there was never a time that Wesley and Shirley did not know each other. The two were raised within ½ mile of each other. They also attended the same school and the same church.
According to Wesley, he knew when he was in the fifth grade that one day he and Shirley would be married. At the age of 18, Wesley proposed to Shirley and she accepted. On the 19th of October 1958, they started their journey as husband and wife. According to them, “The commitment they made that day has grown stronger as the years went by. They contribute the success to a wonderful marriage to the third person in their marriage, Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of their lives. They have three wonderful children, Anthony Lee, Teresa Diana and Donald Wesley.”
At the age of 17, Wesley joined the US Air Force with the intention of making a career in the military. After six and a half years he got out of the Air Force to attend College and Graduate School. With a wife and three children, he went through seven years of schooling to meet the military’s requirement to be a chaplain in the Army. He said he would never had made it if he had not had a dedicated wife who stood beside him.
Having received his Master of Divinity Wesley applied for active duty in the military to serve as a chaplain. He was accepted as a chaplain in the US Army in 1972. He furthered his education by earning a Master’s degree in Education, majoring in counseling, also earned a Master’s degree in Administration. In 1992 he retired as Lt. Colonel. Altogether he served the Armed Forces 26 years. His desire from the age of 14 was to serve, first of all, God and second to serve his country. Today at the age of 80 he looks back and has no regrets.
Shirley said that she has enjoyed being a minister’s wife and also as a military wife. She also has no regrets in serving alongside her husband.
Anyone with an interest in knowing more about the critical role a chaplain serves in the military can purchase a copy of Chaplain Pike’s book, “Memories of a Chaplain”, at Barnes and Nobles or Amazon.