CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-JAKE MIDNIGHT

Welcome, how long have you lived in Peakview County?

All my life. I was born and raised in Aspen Ridge and now live with my wife and stepson on my ranch outside of Peakview. We also have three horses, two dogs, six cats, 6 chickens, and two pigmy goats. It’s quite the zoo sometimes. My stepson, Ethan, constantly wants to add more animals. I think he should grow up to be a vet.

What do you do for a living?

I’m an EMT for Peakview Fire and Rescue. Have been for over twenty years. We serve all of Peakview County.

Tell us more about your job.

It’s always interesting. We handle all kinds of calls here in the Colorado high country. From vehicles accidents caused by flatlanders driving too fast on curvy mountain roads, to bear and mountain lion sightings, to rescues of hikers and climbers. Every day is different. That’s one thing I like about the job. It never gets boring. And I help those in need–it’s rewarding.

You’re newly married, how’s that?

Married life is wonderful. Kelly, my wife, manages Sam’s Hardware in Peakview. I love having her and Ethan at my ranch. Actually, I met her as part of my job, when Ethan had an asthma attack. He wasn’t used to the high altitude.

Was it love at first sight.

Hardly, we didn’t hit it off very well at first, but it all worked out in the end. I’m glad it did. I’d lived alone for a long time. Having a family is the best.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?

If you’re planning a trip to our beautiful county, rest assured that you will have the best help if anything happens. I think we have the best fire department around. Hope to see you all soon.

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-ANN ANDERSON

Hi. My name is Ann Anderson. I live with my husband of almost thirty years, Gary, on a small farm just out of town off the highway.

Are you from Peakview?

Almost, I grew up over in Aspen Ridge. I met Gary when I was in high school. We both went to Mountain High.  It was pretty much love at first sight, we started dating when we were Juniors and have been together ever since. It must run in the family. The same thing happened with my daughter, Penny and her now husband, Luke.

Anyway, once we decided to get married, Gary bought our farm, and we’ve lived there ever since. Gary runs a few head of cattle, some horses, and chickens. My pride and joy is my vegetable garden.  I sell produce to all the neighbors each fall.  I love growing things and seem to have a green thumb.

You mentioned Penny. Is she your only child?

Yep. God only blessed us with one, but she is our pride and joy. And now I have a grandson, Bronco. He’s just the cutest little guy. Penny and Luke live a the Walker Ranch which buts right up to our property. I can walk over there and see my grandson every day. Some days, Penny even drops him off when she works at the camp. Gary and I both love our new role as grandparents. We’re hoping that they have a couple more.

Do you have any other interests besides your garden and your grandson?

I have more interests than time these days. I love to crochet. I’ve made a few new baby blankets recently. I’m part of the women’s group at church. We do a lot to help the needy in our community. Gary says I need to slow down, but that’s not happening any time soon.

Anything special you can tell us about living in Peakview County?

It’s the best. The weather, the scenery, the friendly people–it never gets old. I wouldn’t live anywhere else. It’s the best place on earth. Drop on by and see you, you’ll see what I mean.

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-LUKE WALKER

How long have you lived in Peakview?

All my life. That would be 24 years. I grew up on the Walker Ranch, with my parents, Jeff and Susan Walker and my older brother, Matt. What a place to grow up. My earliest playmates were horses and cows. You could say ranching is in my blood. Unfortunately, Mom died of cancer when I was just twelve. Dad did a pretty darn good job of being a single parent. Although his cooking skills took some practice. I credit Violet for keeping us alive those first few months.

I hear you meet your wife, Penny, in kindergarten. Was it love at first sight?

Not exactly. We were always friends. Her parents own the ranch right next door to ours. It wasn’t until Mom passed that we became more. She was just there for me, got me. I don’t think I’d have made it through that time without her. After that, we became an item–dated all the way through high school. But my dream was always to stay on the ranch, raise quarter horses with Dad, and Penny wanted out. She dreamed of big cities. We broke up when she went off to college in Chicago. I hardly saw her for four years. And then she was back. She found a job at Peak Adventure Camp and the rest is history. I never really stopped loving her.

Tell us about your son.

Bronco. He’s the best. He’s four months old now. He already loves horses. Being a dad is the hardest and best thing I’ve ever done. Every day he does something new. I hope he grows up to love the land as much as Dad and I do. Penny is a great mom. I knew she would be.

Tell us something we don’t know about you.

I’m an introvert. I was the football star in high school, ran with the popular crowd. Everyone viewed me as outgoing. Really inside,  I hate crowds. I’m more comfortable around horses than people. Give me a nice evening at home with my wife and son, that’s heaven for me.