We have known Mary-Clayton’s family for several years, going back to at least Will’s ninth grade year. Since then we have been fortunate enough to visit with them several times. Here are a few details that I am pretty sure to be true – though I will not guarantee 100% accuracy.
Doctor daddy Tom grew up in Sandy Springs and graduated from North Springs High School, Furman University, and the Georgia Medical School in Augusta. He is a general surgeon in Cartersville and a big Braves fan who has attended MLB games all around the country. I met Tom and rode with him to the chilly Living Science Zoo Atlanta Overnighter attended by my Anna and his son Thomas. It snowed while we walked around the dark zoo after closing hours.
Mom Regina grew up in Greenville and met Tom at Furman University. I unknowingly followed Regina up Ponce de Leon Avenue to the Fox Theater when I was picking up Will and Holt after they saw Mary-Clayton sing in the ensemble for the Theater of the Stars production of The Sound of Music. Regina was wearing orange sweatpants and looked nothing like a suburban soccer mom. Afterwards we all ate at the Varsity.
Big sister Anna graduated from Living Science in 2010 and Bellhaven University in Mississippi. She is finishing up at Kennesaw State and plans on attending graduate school in Virginia. Anna is an accomplished dancer. She was the first Gilbert family member I met, on Will’s first Living Science Senior Retreat, to Tybee Island when he was in 9th grade. Anna is one year older than Will.
Anna’s boyfriend Zack befriended her at Kennesaw State. He graduates this spring and plans on attending graduate school as well. Grew up north of Alpharetta.
Mary-Clayton is the middle child. Graduated in 2012 from Living Science. Was active in 4H and was voted Miss Georgia in the Distinguished Young Women pageant (formerly America’s Junior Miss). I got to know Mary-Clayton on Will’s 10th grade Living Science Senior Retreat to St. George’s Island (or the one to the Kennedy Space Center).
Little brother Thomas was in Anna’s class years ago at Living Science. He was the famous victim of Lily Neibur’s slingshot attack. Has played baseball and football for Johnson Ferry Christian Academy and is a statewide bigwig at 4H. Thomas will graduate from high school in 2016. Thomas was on a Living Science Spring Expedition to Jekyll Island that I chaperoned.
Grandparents – Tom’s parents live in East Cobb near Parkaire and are longtime members of Johnson Ferry. One year Will and I ate Thanksgiving dinner there on Black Friday and met several other family members.
Midtown uncle – Tom’s younger brother lives near Piedmont Park.
Roswell uncle – Regina’s brother lives off Old Alabama near the big Methodist church.
Athens uncle – Tom’s oldest brother has two college-age children.
South Carolina aunt – Regina’s sister came to Mary-Clayton’s high school graduation.
California uncle – another brother of Tom.