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Building a Legacy of Faith, Family and Friends: Jennifer & Sean McGuire

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05/01/2012 - By Gayle Irwin

As they anticipate the birth of their first child in September, Jennifer and Sean McGuire already have in mind how they will raise their baby – strong in faith, closeness with family, and encouraging friends – building upon the foundation given them by their parents.

The couple has attended Highland Park Community Church for many years. They participate in the choir and lead a community group of young couples.

"Our church family is huge for us," Jennifer says.

Additionally, natural family ties are strong. Both were raised by parents who not only encouraged their children, but who also sacrificed so their kids could go farther in life. For example, Jen says, her dad was her swim coach.

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"He volunteered when we didn't have one in Douglas and ultimately enabled me to be as successful as I was in swimming with eventually competing at the Division One collegiate level at the University of Wyoming," she says. "My mom and my dad were huge at self-sacrificing so we kids could do what we wanted in swimming. Pretty spectacular."

Sean and Jen are very close with both sides of the family. And, their respective parents are good friends; in fact, the in-laws live within blocks of one another in Cheyenne.

Friendships are also extremely important to Sean and Jen. They like sharing meals and other gatherings. Jen enjoys cooking and trying new dishes out on not only her husband, but also their circle of friends.

Companionship also binds the couple. Married nine years, Jen and Sean relish each other's company.

"We do everything together," Sean says. "I married my best friend."

They share a love of sports, especially hockey, and the outdoors. They enjoy traveling and camping and especially like spending time in national parks and forests, like Yellowstone and Rocky Mountain parks and the Bighorn and Medicine Bow national forests. They've also visited Ireland.

Their strong relationship connects to how they were raised, they say.

"We were raised similarly, in Christian homes where marriage and family were very important," Sean says.

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"Our parents are good marriage and friend role models," Jen states. "We take marriage very seriously."

"You give 110 percent and expect nothing in return," Sean adds.

"We've had our challenges, like anyone else (but) we made vows and got married before God," Jen continues. "That means you don't give up, on yourself, your marriage or your partner."

Challenges for the McGuires included a significant accident Sean experienced and also a miscarriage. Sean fell on ice a few years ago and has since endured 18 back surgeries, due to complications.

"It made our relationship stronger," Jen says.

"It galvanized our faith," Sean adds.

As they prepare for the arrival of this baby, Jen and Sean plan to instill in this little one the legacy of faith, family and friendship.

"Having a baby broadens your perspective. We want to bring up our children to serve others. We learned so much from our upbringing, and we want to pass that on," says Jen.

Part of their service includes visiting people in hospitals, bringing meals to those who are ill, and praying diligently for family and friends. They also adopted a family during the holidays and donated to the House of Hope, a charity for needy families. Their community group has also served at the Rescue Mission.

"We want to capitalize on that as a couple, as a church, and as a community group," Jen states.

"Our parents instilled within us strong values of faith and family, and we want to serve people. We're very blessed with what we have, and we want to pay it forward," says Sean.

They also help one another, not just through difficult health issues, but also in daily duties. As a professional couple, both working outside the home, they share household chores. Jen cooks, Sean cleans. He works as an environmental health and safety specialist for Chesapeake Oil and Gas, and she is a dental hygienist for Dr. Steve Dacus and oversees the hygienist department.

Although neither grew up in Casper (Jen was raised in Douglas, and Sean raised in Pennsylvania and Cheyenne), their church, family and friends, bind them to the community.

"Our church, family and friends make Casper home for us," Jen says.

"Actually, the wind… we really like the wind," Sean jokes.

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