James Anthony and Patsy Claudean Wilson Turpiano are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. They were married March 9, 1970, at St. Roberts Church of St. Charles.
It was destiny that they met. Jim was stationed in Virginia when he got a chance to finish college. Pat was in California. Her father retired from the Marine Corps, and the family moved to St. Louis.
Jim and Pat enrolled at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. They met in anthropology class, not a requirement for an education or business degree. Jim was looking for a wife, as he needed to get back to Virginia. They had a very short engagement and quickie wedding.
They were blessed, one way or another, with many children: James Ray (Karen), Robert (Mindy), Michael (Jessica), Daniel (Lauren), Jennifer (1987-2018), Sarah (Kenneth), Rebecca (Richard), Emily (Robert), and Mia.
Grandchildren include Evelyn (Jordan), James Jr. (Jasmine), Landien, Nathan, Joey, Marilyn, Anastasia, plus Maribeth, Rosie and six ex-steps. Great-grandsons are Jameson and Julian.
Jim and Pat were foster parents for more than 14 years, parenting 190 foster children. They have pictures!
Three years in Hawaii and traveling to China to adopt their last child were Pat’s “grand adventures.” Pat is always bragging about finishing college while their first two sons were still in diapers; Jim getting his master’s in psychology while working two jobs; her dog being picked as the centerfold of Dog Fancy magazine; picketing St. Charles City Hall; confirmation of the children at Ebenezer UCC; and (drum roll) their four birth sons being Eagle Scouts.
Several of their children and spouses joined the Air Force. Pat is so glad that they all are currently back on the mainland.
Jim retired with 34 years as a lieutenant from the St. Charles City Police Department. He held most every job, the most fun was K-9 officer and the last being chief of detectives. He also retired as lieutenant colonel with 37 years in the Army (active/reserve), receiving many medals including the Bronze Star and Republic of Vietnam Service Medal with Four Service Stars.
Jim is a life member of MOAA, ROA, DAV, VFW, FOP and Good Sam Club. Fishing is his passion. He especially liked fishing for flounder and black sea bass in the Atlantic Ocean, small mouth bass in Canada and trout at Montauk State Park.
In retirement, Pat thought they would travel to more dog shows in their RV or hang out all day in their waterbed. Jim’s plans were to sell everything, move to a cave and not give out their address.
Jim got rid of the RV and the waterbed. They still live on Pat’s hobby farm in Augusta.
“We are never bored, not sure we are getting anything done, but always busy.”