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Jeff M.
Republican FL 1

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  • Recognizing the Fiftieth Wedding Anniversary of Robert and Carolyn Black of Valparaiso, Florida

    by Representative Jeff Miller

    Posted on 2013-12-19

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    MILLER of florida in the house of representatives Thursday, December 19, 2013 Mr. MILLER of Florida. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to commemorate the Fiftieth Wedding Anniversary of Robert and Carolyn Black of Valparaiso, Florida. A tireless and dedicated member of my staff who has been with me since the beginning of my time here in Congress, Bob is the epitome of an unwavering public servant, and I am grateful to have known him and his wife Carolyn for over twelve years. I am proud to honor the Blacks and congratulate them on this remarkable milestone.

    Bob and Carolyn, both born into military families, have called many places home; however, it was each of their homes in Ohio in the 1960s that would prove to be particularly special to them. Their parents were both stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base outside of Springfield, OH, and as neighbors, Carolyn was literally ``the girl next door.'' Bob and Carolyn attended the same school, Greenon High. Bob's wit and intellect won over Carolyn's heart and became a perfect match to her grace and charm. As high school sweethearts, on November 23, 1963, Bob and Carolyn were married.

    The son of an Air Force Pilot, Bob followed in his father's footsteps and was commissioned in the United States Air Force. Over the course of the last fifty years since their paths first crossed, Bob and Carolyn's journey would include assignments throughout the U.S. and around the world. Bob was steadfast in his commitment to support the varied missions of the United States, whether it be operating C-130s or C- 141s, fulfilling his test pilot obligations, or commanding troops responsible for safe passage of everything from penguins to Presidents. Carolyn, having been daughter to a pilot herself, was equally steadfast in her commitment to the mission of a military wife and mother. She focused her troops on the active exploration of what each new location had to offer, the intentional effort to forge strong relationships with one another, and the importance of an open mind. It is unquestioned that the success of their partnership is possible because of the strength and love Bob and Carolyn share.

    Bob's last assignment as the Vice Commander of the Air Force Development Test Center at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida brought them to the Gulf Coast in 1992. Bob retired from the Air Force as a Colonel in October 1994, though, with Carolyn's continued support, he continues to contribute to the defense of our country, including his role on my staff as my Senior Military Advisor.

    Bob and Carolyn have accomplished much together, but their greatest achievement is their five daughters. They are the proud parents of Christine (and Brian McCann), Shana (and Christopher Swartz), Kelly (and Shawn Swartz), Sarah Kate, and Anna Lauren, and proud grandparents to Jack, Kate, Alden, and Bridget. All five daughters have continued their parent's commitment to family, community and compassion through their professions, such as nursing, medical research and specialty healthcare for Veterans as well as their personal endeavors such as programs for special needs children and Scouting leadership. Needless to say, Bob and Carolyn enjoy spending time with their family and the beauty of the Emerald Coast.

    Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the United States Congress, I am humbled to recognize the dedicated service of Bob and Carolyn to the Northwest Florida community and this great Nation. My wife, Vicki, and I congratulate the Blacks, our dear friends, on their Golden Anniversary and wish them and their family all of God's blessings. May He grant them many more years of good health and happiness.


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