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Her parents, Charles and Janet Buford, still live in Donnellson, Iowa where they lived when Mary was growing up. She was born in Keokuk.
Mary has one older brother, Jeff (Wendy) from Donnellson and one younger brother, David (Lori) who lives in Bonaparte.
Mary came in between the boys and she also had a sister Carol who was two years younger than she was. Carol died when she was five years old and Mary was seven. She was born with cystic fibrosis. It was a sad time for the whole family, but a seven year old didn't understand all of it at the time.
Mary's father is now retired from the postal service. He was a rural mail carrier and a farmer. Her mother is a wife and mother and a volunteer for what ever needed doing. She is sort of retired from that, too.
All of Mary's grandparents are deceased, but three out of the four grandparents lived with her parents toward the end of their lives. Charles and Janet had an apartment designed in their home which made an ideal arrangement for caring for their aging parents, and that's just what they did.
Her grandparents were Chester and Orvetta Buford, Donnellson and Albert and Faye Schreiber from Revere, Missouri.
Mary graduated from Central Lee High School and went to work for the Great River Area Education Agency soon after graduation. She worked there for eleven years taking time out to raise her family.
She is now employed as secretary for the Iowa Educators Consortium Co-op. They bid out and produce a catalog of audio, video and computer equipment and supplies for the schools in Iowa.
Mary met her husband, Bill Allaman at a Christian singles bible study group in Burlington, IA. The group besides, bible study participated, in other activities. They had wiener roasts, played volleyball, went bowling and skating.
They were married in 1985 in the First Baptist Church in Farmington, Iowa. They honeymooned at the Wisconsin Dells and returned to their present home in rural Rozetta Township. They live near Bill's parents Charles and Alice Allaman, so both their fathers are named Charles!
Bill farms and is a crew leader for Munson Hybrid seed corn and they will begin detasseling soon.
In 1991 Justin was born and Rachel was born two and a half years later. Justin graduated from Western Illinois University with a degree in agri-business and is presently on a cross country trip to Colorado with his cousin, Jacob Allaman.
Rachel graduated from West Central High School last year and is attending Greenville College in Greenville, Illinois. This summer she is presently in the Republic of Cameroon in Central West Africa teaching at an orphanage.
The family vacations are getting a little more difficult since Rachel and Justin are finding such other adventures:.. Mary said they always try to make it to the Iowa State Fair each year though, and it is in August so maybe they will clear their calendars for that.
They all recently made a trip to New York to see a local girl, Miriam Rutzen play basketball with the Harvard University Girls Basketball team. They went to Ithaca, New York where Harvard played Cornell and won! They also went in to the city where their tour guide, Hannah Allaman (their niece) who attends Colombia University showed them the sights. They saw Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Central Park and they were spotted on TV (by their neighbor Nancy Brokaw), as the camera scanned the crowd at the Today Show.
The family has been to Walt Disney World two times since the kids were in elementary school. In 2010 Bill and Mary had their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary. They celebrated on a three day cruise to the Bahamas. They are also big St. Louis Cardinal fans and make a trip to see the team play at least once a year. A future vacation destination is the Grand Canyon:some day.
Their family attends the Rozetta Baptist Church where Mary is on the fellowship committee and teaches preschool Sunday School. You may wonder what you can teach a preschooler, but that's what Jesus did. She was also a crew leader for the Vacation Bible School this year.