Virgil and Esther Moneysmith

Biographical Sketch


1910 – Virgil Walter Moneysmith born in Mishawaka , Ind. 

1915 – Esther Evelyn Hawkins born in Hastings , Mich. 

1920 - Hawkins family moved to Mishawaka, Indiana, when Grandpa Hawkins accepted pastorate of the First Baptist Church there.

1927 – Virgil’s mother (44) died of complications following goiter surgery 

1932 – Virgil met Esther at the Baptist church her father pastored 

1933 – March 3 (i.e., 3-3-’33) he proposed; 
8-5 they were married 

1934 –Sailed for Africa 

1936 – Daughter Esther Joanne was born 

1937 –Went on furlough 

1938 –Went to Paris to study French. 
Two months after their arrival, Hitler tried to conquer French 

1939 – (April) Moved on to Africa 
(Aug) Son Don Paul was born

1940 –Moved from Bangassou station to Bakouma station

1941 – Daughter Dorothy Louise was born 

1943 or ’44 – Killed three lions after they ate the family’s Scottie dog 

1945 – Spent three months returning to the U.S. at the close of the War 

1946 – Returned to Africa 

1950 – Went on furlough; given a house to live in in Wheaton Ill 

1951 – Grandma Hawkins (57) died of cancer (July) 

1952 – Returned to Africa leaving Esther at Hampton DuBose Academy in Florida ; asked to become dorm parents at the mission school at Ft. Crampel 

1954 – Returned to U.S. in time for daughter Esther’s high school graduation; agreed to set up a home for teenage MKs who did not have high schools on the field; said they would do it if it could be in Wheaton 

1955 – Welcomed first sixteen teenagers to live with them year around at Mid-Maples 

1956 – Both their fathers died at age 76 (Jacob Moneysmith on May 25, Mont Hawkins on Sept. 12)

1958 – Daughter Esther graduated from Wheaton College and Son Don from Wheaton Academy ; Esther married Fred Gross on Moneysmiths’ 25th anniversary (Aug) 

1959 – Daughter Dottie graduated from Wheaton Academy 

1960 – serious car accident (hit by another car) left one of the MKs dead, Don with a head injury and broken leg, and Virgil with both legs broken. First grandchild (Laurie) born ten days later. 

1962 – second grandchild born (Lynée) 

1963 – Daughter Dottie married Bob Hoppe (Nov) 

1964 – Son Don killed in a lone car accident in Colorado ; grandson Don Paul Gross born five months later on his birthday 

1965 – Finished serving at Mid-Maples and moved to Carol Stream , Ill. ; fourth grandchild (Matthew) born; Bob and Dottie w/ Matt left for Colombia with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Virgil began working for Wheaton College 

1967 – Esther started working as “counselor to married students’ wives at Moody Bible Institute; fifth grandchild (Nathan) born in Colombia 

1969 – Sixth grandchild (Rachel) born in Colombia . Esther went to visit them in Bogota ; Hoppe family returned for first furlough and lived with them at the Carol Stream house 

1970 – Dottie and family returned to Colombia , followed by Esther and family. 

1971 – Moneysmiths went to Colombia to the Lomalinda translation center for Christmas; stayed a month and baptized Esther’s three children in the lake there. 

1973 – Gross family came for furlough and lived with them at the Carol Stream house 

1975 – Gross family returned to Colombia 

1978 – Found a house to buy in Cherokee Village , Ark. 

1979 – Virgil retired and they moved to Cherokee Village 

1983 – Big anniversary celebration at Cherokee Village for their 50th (and Esther & Fred’s 25th) 

1985 – Moved to Dallas 

1987 – Moved back to Cherokee Village 

1988 – Virgil died of cancer in Daughter Esther’s home in Dallas ; Esther returned alone to the home in Cherokee Village  

1991 – Esther died in Jonesboro , Ark. , hospital