We met at Menards and I proposed in a Bemidji Bar.
Our parents met at the Lavender Inn in Faribault. They were polar opposites of each other, much like us. But they could see the happiness in our eyes and I believe we all left with big smiles.
Getting to know the Gallagher's was initially daunting. Right from the start it was clear Molly was the apple in all their eyes. I had to mind my P'S and Q's because I knew acceptance was not easily bestowed. I'm not going to speak for them, but my love for Molly was the key to getting in. My last name is Carter, but I'm also darn proud to be a Gallagher.
Planning a wedding was a breeze, because all Molly wanted to do was put our guests at ease.
There has never been a more beautiful bride and saying I do made me cry.
Our wedding celebration was a blur with formality and timing afterthoughts. I do recall organizing a posse to get Molly and the Groomsman back to the venue, and please don't ask me what was on the menu. Our guests were amazing, and we didn't want it to end, but we had a home to move into so off we went.
We settled in Prior Lake and began our work careers in earnest. Our discussions regarding work were limited, but I can tell you Molly excelled. She was an HR guru, and the companies she worked for were oh so lucky to have her, as are all the people she worked with and hired.
Our Waseca parties are legendary. Time spent at a resort called Brookside a blast. Playing softball with friends in the sun. A cruise on the Caribbean and several Christmas's in the desert. My parents moved to Carolina and going to the white sandy beaches was her pleasure. She traveled to Europe with Shannah and couldn't wait to tell us all about it. The photos we took are stowed away, but I have glorious memories of Molly at play.
Molly asked if we could speak in the kitchen and her tone made me nervous. This must be serious I thought so I began to think of things I could have done wrong. It's time to start a family she said and my reaction was guarded. Why now I thought. We were living so free and easy. Our decision making was always a partnership, but after looking into those beautiful eyes I knew she had me pinned. Looking back, I question myself for being so coy, because the two wonderful lives we created bring us overwhelming joy.
I don't think Molly would object when I say she wasn't an elite athlete. In fact watching her swing a golf club was painful. But beneath that always present smile burned a highly competitive drive. She took to coaching like a fish to water, and volleyball became a passion. Her teams winning percentages were probably 500, but her preparation, knowledge of the game, and genuine caring for her players was Hall of Fame level. She loved sharing her critique of how the team played and if she saw improvement it made her day. What a great legacy to leave and I'm sure all the players she coached would agree.
Our home is nice, but not a palace. Our furniture is worn, and there are weeds in the lawn. To Molly those types of things are trivial. Being a loving Mother, caring for our pets, nursing me through my odd afflictions (hiccups for 30 straight hours), and keeping in touch with relatives and friends were always the priority. What has occurred is tremendously unfair. A genuinely good person taken away. But the thought of a world without Molly would be far worse. The affection people feel for her is a testament to a life well lived. We will all move forward but something will always be missing. But having Molly in our hearts is the gift that keeps giving.
I love you Molly!!!
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