Elaine Ledbetter September 20, 1998

 In August of 1962, Dr. Hubert Bratcher, pastor of the First
United Methodist church in Pampa, Texas, exchanged
pulpits with Rev. Ronald Pearce of Kenton. England. Rev.
Pearce brought his wife, Brenda, and his two daughters,
Heather and Catherine (Cathy). Cathy celebrated her tenth
birthday on August 27, 1962, while they were in Pampa.

During the four weeks they were here we became good
friends and they insisted that we come to England the fol-
lowing summer. So late in June, 1963, we sailed from
New York on the Queen Mary to Cherbourg, France. From
there we took the boat train to Paris where we spent one
week. After that, we flew to London for a three-week visit
in the Pearce home.

Ron's parishioners were thrilled to entertain friends from
the states so we received numerous invitations. This pro-
vided a wonderful opportunity to see something of England
from the viewpoint of natives rather than a tourist.

After returning home we kept in touch with the family.
When Cathy graduated from grammar school, she was
accepted by Nottingham University. However, the officials
suggested that she spend a year "broadening" herself be-
fore beginning her University studies.

Ron presented the situation to Bill and arrangements were
made for Cathy to spend the school year in Pampa attend-
ing our local high school where I was teaching.

Cathy arrived in early October, 1970, for what proved to
be a memorable experience for everyone concerned. Bill
was president of the Pampa Rotary Club that year and the
International Activities Committee chaired by Rev. Sam
Hulsey, became involved. Rotary families signed up to host
Cathy in their homes for a week at a time. She was so
popular that the schedule became quite hectic in the

The high school committee responsible for the American
Field Service Exchange Program included Cathy in their
activities. As a result she was able to go with several high
school groups on out of town trips. The AFS student that
year was Regina Stucchi from Brazil and she and Cathy
became good friends. In fact, they often ate lunch with our
good neighbors, the Jack O. Millers, whose daughters Mimi
and Merrilynn were also in high school at the time.

After school was out in May, we took Cathy on an extended
tour of the western part of the United States before she
returned to England.

Rev. Pearce arranged for an exchange with the Hennipen
Methodist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in August
of 1972. Cathy spent the first week there, then came on
to Pampa to renew friendships here, We entertained at
her 20th birthday party and recalled the party a few short
years earlier when she was ten.

Her parents j oined her in Pampa when their month in Min-
neapolis was over and many friends they had made in 1962
were happy to see them again.

Cathy completed her University education and married
Paul Boynton. They came for a visit in October, 1977. Bill
took them on a trip to the west coast, but I was unable to
accompany them as I was teaching.

The Boyntons now have two daughters, Glare and Sarah.
We visited them in England in 1987 and are looking for-
ward to having the family in our home sometime in the
near future.

Ron retired, but continued to preach until his death in
1992, We keep in touch with Brenda and the Boyntons
and regard all of them as part of our extended family.

Back to "Called To Teach" Table of Contents Page- Click HERE