At the ripe old age of thirty-nine, Mike Bracken had sworn off women. Frustrated and fed up, he adopted a yellow lab puppy in December of 2000 and had committed to spend the rest of his days as a single man in St. Louis. Fate, however, had other plans.
At the ripe old age of thirty-nine, Tammy Kofron had sworn off men. Not because of bad experiences, but because she simply enjoyed living on her own. With her trusted four-legged companions, Henley and Lucy, Tammy looked forward to spending the rest of her days as a single woman in St. Peters. Again, fate had other plans.
Through friends of friends, both Mike and Tammy had been invited to a New Year’s Day brunch for single Christians. Both had other exciting plans for the day – Mike had a poker game; Tammy had….laundry. Despite previous plans, both ended up at the party. When the call went out for players for “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?”, Mike and Tammy, who had never laid eyes on each other up to that point, agreed to be partners. (Little did they know that “partners” they would truly become!). Although they lost the game (the official animal of Australia is actually the kangaroo and NOT the koala – FYI), they began a long conversation that lasted hours. Neither was even looking for a date, much less love.
Despite having promised himself a life of bachelorhood, Mike emailed Tammy the next day and sent a picture of his lab, Alex. (Mike would later say he felt some guilt about “using” his cute puppy as a reason to contact Tammy). Apparently, Tammy had no objections.
Six days later, on January 7, Mike and Tammy went on their first date. Thirty-seven DAYS later, on Valentine’s Day, they got engaged. Indeed, fate had decided theirs was NOT to be a long courtship. Four MONTHS later, in Lake Tahoe, the two were married. They vacationed in Bora Bora (which Tammy had always thought was a fictional place until they landed!). Neither one could have possibly imagined that the decision to go to that brunch would change their lives forever. The two have been married 16 ½ years and have lived in Bonne Terre for 15 of those years. In May of 2012, Mike and Tammy adopted three children and became parents – at the riper old age of 51.
They are blessed beyond their wildest dreams (and Tammy still believes the official animal of Australia is the koala). THE MORAL OF THEIR STORY: “It’s okay to let the laundry go” and “There’ll always be another poker game”