By: Pat Winter
Sheila and Mike McGauvran, empty-nesters with six children out on their own, were living in the Rhode Island community of North Kingstown and starting to think about what their retirement might look like. Sheila, a municipal civil engineer with the town of Westerly, wanted a home in a neighborhood offering golf and sailing in a beautiful location. Mike, a retired Air Force pilot and a professor at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, agreed their ideal retirement location would be somewhere along the scenic southeast coast of the United States. Welcome to Albemarle Plantation, Mike and Sheila!
So, how did they find us? The McGauvrans began their search with a tour of the Carolinas, starting in Charleston and moving north along the coast. When they reached Norfolk, they took a day trip south to Hertford to take a look. They drove straight to our marina where they met Fred Schenker. Fred struck up a conversation, invited them back to his house, and enthusiastically shared stories about the lifestyle we enjoy in our resort-like community.
That was enough to bring the McGauvrans back for a second look on a weekend promotional package. During that visit, they didn’t find a house they loved, but met Judy and Tom Lampley, who served as their resident ambassadors and eagerly shared with them the lifestyle found here on the Albemarle Sound. By the Sunset on Pelican Bay time their weekend was over, Sheila and Mike were impressed not only with the area’s beauty, but with the friendliness, variety, and breadth of the people in the community.
When they returned in the spring for a third look around, realtor Mary Ann Whisman showed them nine-teen houses, including one very special home on Roanoke Drive that was move-in ready, with a view of our beautiful golf course. Neighbors Jim and Paula Green welcomed them with open arms, and “move-in” day was just two short months ago.
Sheila and Mike are thrilled at the network of friends they have already made who are ready partners for sport or socializing. Sheila has been spending some quality time on the golf course, and Mike has enjoyed racing with the OYC on Fred Levine’s sailboat TaxSea. They hope to purchase a sailboat in the near future and take part in both the cruiser and racing programs sponsored by our yacht club. Traveling is something that is in the planning stages right now, with Alaska high on their list of destinations. Meanwhile, Sheila has already planted some bulbs that will bloom right outside their windows next spring and hopes to have an herb garden growing out-side her kitchen door by next summer.
Sheila and Mike’s children live as close by as Hampton, Virginia, and as far away as Istanbul, Turkey. Part of the family, too, is Cassidy, their miniature golden doodle who keeps them busy walking her along the golf course during off hours.
So, be on the lookout for Sheila & Mike (and Cassidy). And be sure to help us welcome them home!