My mom, Helen Thompson Loudermilk and my dad, Elmer Loudermilk had a big dream. They wanted to create a time and space where annually my aunts, uncles, and cousins would all come together to share stories, laugh, play and just be together. Mom was one of 6 children so when they got together, they knew how to have a really good time.
At first, 1966, the gathering was at their Indianapolis suburban home around Christmas but by 1975 the reunion had moved to their newly purchased farm, home on 75 acres of rolling hills near Greencastle, IN. Initially, it was held in fall but morphed to an annual Fourth of July reunion. This place called Airy Knob with its natural beauty and its 19th century Italianate farm house soon became more of a week end destination with mom providing all the food for over 40 people.
As the popularity of the reunion gained momentum, friends became family. Soon, Jan Thompson Goldsmith and John Goldsmith created their first family Video which captured the essence and the emotional love that so naturally flowed as people greeted each other, played croquet, and ate enormous amounts of their favorite holiday foods. Jan’s videos quickly became one of the most dominant forms of capturing memories. They drove more engagement and created more memories than other content types like photos. Her Videos cause a tremendous impact on families because it allows people to be visually and emotionally immersed. This creates and strengthens relationships because they can actually see it and can feel and be part of that memory.
As the love and emotion was captured in this first video, she has created more. Each time, the family watches one of her videos, tears flow as we remember the good times and especially the love! Photos would never capture the feelings and love.
We are very grateful for the vision of my parents to create this wonderful tradition for extended family and friends to be one and for Jan and John to create the videos which allow us all to maintain such wonderful memories.
Helen, Elmer, Jan and John were born to be a blessing to all of our family! This year we will be celebrating our 51st reunion at Airy Knob Farm in Greencastle, Indiana.