Karen Zach (right) and Suzie.
Karen Zach (right) and Suzie.
This week's subject is near and dear to me from day one, Feb. 15, 1972. I gave birth to this little sweetie, so excited to add a sister for big brother, Jay. I was soon told however, "Your baby's going to die!" Well, she showed 'em. Having had Hyaline Membrane (what President Kennedy's child died with a couple of years before) the doctor who was called-in-to-take care of Suzie had been one of the team who had worked on a treatment that had cured many babies. Sure that was a part of it, but mainly because my girl is such a go-getter and there were lots of prayers sent her way, I can today feature Suzie Zach Baldwin as this week's Around the County subject.

As a child, Suzie was forever outside, following her Daddy around, planting flowers, picking 'em and making me a bouquet. Early on, Suz was a people person, dressing up in my A&W top, taking orders and delivering fake food. Bet my mother-in-law, Joan, ordered 2,000 coneys and that many root beers in play with her granddaughter. Guess it worked as Suzie became an amazing waitress. Suzie and her brother Jay (who was State President) were involved in C.A.R. as children, spending many weekends at conferences or historical events.

Before and during grade school, she played basketball at the Boys/Girls Club then every sport she could get in to after that, including gymnastics, baton, softball, volleyball, basketball, and on and on. She held the 100-yard dash and 1600 co-ed relay, both standing as school records for about 20 years. She still loves sports and often plays softball with the family or volleyball on a team. Always involved in the banquets or senior nights of sports, she also occasionally makes Zach's coneys for a treat. Her husband, Steve Baldwin, is a sports guru, as well and during the early years of marriage, they would travel with Steve's amazing softball team to tournaments at the State and even National level.

Like me, Suzie has always loved learning. A big reader (although her brother Jay outdoes us all), she graduated from Southmont in 1990, where she had been active in Student Council, Royal Ambassadors, Softball, Wrestling manager, and theater. Working long hours at Zach's Family Restaurant, she loved her customers. It was a degree as a Legal Secretary and working for Goebel, McGaughey, Sosbe & Tribbett's after ITT, then back to the ZFR as assistant manager.

Steve Baldwin saw cute, peppy Suzie Zach on a cable commercial and later realized she was the one for him (plus, he loved her coneys). Realizing they had a mutual friend in Amy Deckard Woodall, she introduced them and they were later married Nov. 19, 1994 (anniversary #20 ahead).

Three of my seven precious grandchildren were born to the Baldwins, A.J., who just graduated from CHS and is attending my Alma Mater, ISU, in the fall to study Insurance/Risk Management with a minor in Mathematics. In the fall, Dane will be a junior at CHS and is active in tennis and baseball. Reilley will be in the first 8th grade graduating class from the new Crawfordsville Middle School and plays tennis, plus is an amazing writer and artist. Steve works for DFAS and recently retired from the Air National Guard (23 years experience) as a Contract Specialist (Technical Sergeant E-6). Rock Point Church is where the Baldwin family worships and have been involved in different capacities (serving in the Children's Department on Sundays, the technical team or MOPS). Suzie is also blessed to help lead a middle school bible study group with her bestie Kristi Mangold (or Girl Silver as I've dubbed her). My daughter loves her children and other kids and can't wait to laugh with someone!

I was honored to have had Suzie in a couple of the St. Mary-of-the-Woods Children Literature courses I taught. Always one to outdo the other students, she graduated with honors (English degree) and is about to finish-up her Master's in Library Science from IUPUI. She is a Local Historian and Reference Librarian at the Crawfordsville District Public Library. Watch her historical blogs on the CDPL web site (http://cdpl-history.blogspot.com/)

After a broken shoulder (four places), an operation and bunch of pain killers and a somewhat botched ATC article, I decided I best elaborate on a close subject I know well, thus I hope you have enjoyed reading about my precious baby girl this week as much as I enjoyed braggin' on her a bit in ATC.

Karen Zach is editor of Montgomery Memories, a literary magazine published by The Paper. Her column is published Thursdays in The Paper.