'Our Korean Firecracker'
by Travis Wiginton
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First of all, let me say that Kyle and Darr 'approved' this article :)
This is a bit different this week, but since our youngest son Kyle will be 49 on July 4th, we thought we would share some things from his life. We arrived in Korea in Sept. 1960 to serve as missionaries.......Kyle was born July 4th, 1961.
(course our other children may cringe at the thought that we might write something on THEIR b'day :)
We'll begin with Kyle's birth at Severance Hospital in Seoul. It was a VERY hot day in the Korean Hospital (which had no air conditioning), so Travis stood at the end of my bed fanning me.
After his birth the nurses kept bringing Kyle to me, wrapped in 1-2 blankets. Bless his heart, he was covered with sweat, but they thought that if he didn't have cover, he might get sick. I finally asked them to bring his bed into my room so that I could take care of him.
For breakfast (and other meals as well) they brought me Korean soup.
I liked the soup, but I don't like bean sprouts, so I would pick those out of my soup.
When the next meal came, there were those bean sprouts again.
I told Travis I just knew they were using the ones I picked out of the previous meal...since they were determined to keep me healthy!
A precious Korean lady, Kim Ajimoni (means 'Auntie') took care of our 3 boys while Travis and I were in language school.
She would carry Kyle on her back while she worked in our home.
She would say "Oh-boo-bah?" to Kyle then she would hoist him onto her back.
Kyle says he still remembers Ajimoni saying that.
He was with her so much that he learned some Korean words (and also some Japanese which she spoke). Though we spoke English to the boys, Kyle was faced with having to learn more English when we returned to America.
When we got back to the States, there were many things that Kyle had never seen.
Our 3 sons were all fascinated by stores when we landed in Anchorage, Alaska and then even larger stores in other cities on our way home.
We were at Travis' parents' home in southwest Oklahoma when a thunderstorm rolled in. We liked to have never gotten Kyle quietened down as he was terrified of the thunder and lightning. I can not imagine what was going through his little mind.
We had to go to court after we came back to America, to make Kyle a U.S. citizen
(he's also a citizen of Korea). The Judge informed us that since Kyle was born in another country, he would never be able to become President of the U.S.A.
(In my heart I was thanking the Lord :)
When Travis pastored in Los Altos, Calif. I would put a sign on our front door each Sunday afternoon which read:
"Sunday is a day of rest...this we are doing! Please do not disturb."
Kristin was born before we moved to California, so there were 6 of us who needed rest.
Kyle always felt like he was missing out on something, so he would climb out the bedroom window and go play with his little friends.
When Travis pastored in Nicoma Park, Ok. the parsonage was next door to the church.
It was a small parsonage, but 4 yrs. later they built a new larger house.
One time when Travis was in a revival in another town, Kyle came home from school and said, "Mom, I traded my bike for a horse!"
(Where was Travis when I needed him? :)
As I was trying to explain to Kyle that we did not have a place for a horse, he said, "Now Mom, I've already talked to Mr. Fitzgerald (a neighbor at the new parsonage) and he said he had room in his barn for my horse....he even put up a nail for my saddle."
When the little boy who traded the horse found out that she was pregnant, he wanted to trade back, but Kyle said, "Nope...a deal's a deal"
So when 'Cinnamon' gave birth, Kyle gave the newborn to Kristin and she named him 'Pepper'. Those little shetland ponies were sure cute!
Nicoma Park is a rural area, so Kyle and Kristin rode those ponies all over town!
Craig and Kevin even rode them some.
They had such fun, so were NOT happy when we moved to our present home in Norman as they had to give their ponies away (to Travis' cousins).
We're not sure they've forgiven us yet!
In addition to Kyle riding his bike all over town delivering a little newspaper
'The Grip'....he also sold fresh vegetables.
Our next door neighbor (Mr. Shipley) had a great garden each year, so he would give Kyle some veggies. Kyle would pull his red wagon and sell them all around town.
He told us that he had his delivery route timed right so that he could get to Mrs. Conley's house as she'd have iced tea and cookies waiting for him!
One time when I was hospitalized with a bad Lupus flare, Kyle skipped class and came up there with a sign he had made. He put it on the machine that was giving me IV's.
It said "Take good care of my Mom!"
The youth group from our church were going to Colorado on a ski trip.
Kyle had gone on previous trips, so he said that he would really like to stay home and work on his car. He wanted to take it apart, then put it back together!
So...his girlfriend Darr (now his sweet wife) was out there with Kyle (night and day) holding the light for him. He DID take that car apart that week AND put it back together!!
Travis and I stood at the kitchen window in awe as we watched Darr holding the light into the night...and Kyle as he started that car up!
When Kyle was trying to talk me into something, he would say
"Oh come on, Moyne yun head" which usually made me laugh.
He came up with that after hearing Senator Daniel Moynihan's name.
I asked our children one time if they had ever regretted being a 'PK' (pastor's kid) and they all said 'No'...then Kyle said, "And miss out on all those good pot luck suppers?"
When Kyle was serving in the Air Force, he rec'd word that he was being sent to Korea.
His commanding officer told Kyle that he had NEVER had anyone be that thrilled about being sent to Korea. Kyle replied, "I was born there Sir, and have never had the chance to go back."
Kyle thoroughly enjoyed Korea as he loves the people, their customs and their food...even Kimchi :)
Our Korean friend (ShinJa Cowan) made some Kimchi for Kyle to take home to Houston. Darr (not too thrilled about the smell) said, "That is going in the trunk of the car as I don't want to smell it."
As I was riding with Kyle in his car one day, the song 'When I Need Love' came on the radio. Kyle reached over and patted my hand and said, "That's our song Mom!"
So for years (and still yet) he will call us when that song is on his radio...he won't say anything, just holds the phone to the radio. During the yrs. we were in Hawaii, we would come home to messages left by him (as well as our other children) The other children would leave messages, but Kyle usually never said anything....just played that song!
'When I Need Love' (Leo Sayer)
"When I need you I just close my eyes and I'm with you
When I need love I hold out my hands and I touch love
Miles and miles of empty space in between us
The telephone can't take the place of your smile"
An incident showing Kyle's tender spirit happened as he driving a large truck through Louisiana. He noticed a small church where a funeral was just over and the family/friends were in front of the church. He got off the Interstate and drove back to that little church to let the people know that he was sorry for their loss. He asked all about their loved one (an elderly black farmer) and listened as they shared memories of him. The family was so touched, they asked Kyle to stay and have lunch with the family. He told them that he'd like to, but that he needed to get back on the road as he had a long drive ahead of him.
Another time, Kyle drove past a group of homeless people underneath the Interstate bridge. He turned around and went back to get some pizzas, then took the food to those people. When he told us about it he said, "I probably shouldn't have done that since Hailey (his daughter) was with me."
I told him that he had just taught her about 'missions' and reaching out to others!
One of Kyle and Darr's favorite poems is 'Footprints in the Sand'.
Another is 'GOD HAS A POSITIVE ANSWER'
You say: "It's impossible"
God says: All things are possible ( Luke 18:27)
You say: "I'm too tired"
God says: I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28-30)
You say: "Nobody really loves me:
God says: I love you (John 3:16 and John 3:34)
You say: "I can't go on"
God says: My grace is sufficient (II Cor. 12:9 and Psalm 91:15)
You say: "I can't figure things out"
God says: I will direct your steps (Proverbs 3:56)
You say: "I can't do it"
God says: You can do all things (Philippians 4:13)
You say: "I'm not able"
God says: I am able (II Cor. 9:8)
You say: "It's not worth it"
God says: It will be worth it (Romans 8:28)
You say: "I can't forgive myself:
God says: I have forgiven you! (I John 1:9 and Romans 8:1)
You say: "I can't manage"
God says: I will supply all your needs (Phil. 4:19)
You say: "I'm afraid"
God says: I have not given you a spirit of fear (II Timothy 1:7)
You say: "I'm always worried and frustrated"
God says: Cast all of your cares on ME (I Peter 5:7)
You say: "I don't have enough faith"
God says: I've given everyone a measure of faith (Romans 12:3)
You say: "I'm not smart enough"
God says: I give you wisdom (I Corinthians 1:30)
You say: "I feel all alone"
God says: I will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5)
"This Independence Day, take a moment to remember the sacrifices of the men and women in our Armed Forces and their families who give up so much to protect the freedoms we might too often take for granted. We can never repay those who chose to serve our country, but we can keep them and their families in our thoughts and prayers this day and every day." (Gov. Brad Henry)
"HAPPY BIRTHDAY" Kyle and may GOD continue to BLESS AMERICA!
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A great report on Kyle. I also liked your poem on "God has a Positive Answer."