Becoming the Admiral’s Wife: A Dual Memoir of a Called Pair
by Cecily Watson Kelln
Proisle Publishing Services

"I was being groomed to understand and conclude that this life has its highs and lows, its victories and defeats, its beginnings and its ends."

Growing up in a tightly knit, loving American family, the author grew from a curious and sometimes incautious child to a vibrant young woman of the 1960s. The first step on her remarkable life journey was joining the newly organized Peace Corps and working in Peru, helping the underprivileged as a teacher and companion and later recruiting new volunteers. After an unsustainable first marriage, she became entranced with a bearded free spirit, Levi. The two hitchhiked across the U.S., had three beautiful children, and experimented with everything from communal living to marijuana to yoga. They parted soon after Kelln had a sudden, powerful Christian conversion. Later returning to her family, Kelln was caring for her aging mother when she met a retired U.S. Navy Admiral, who, like her, enjoyed dancing at a local club. He was older, brought her flowers, and they shared a strong religious faith. Married since 2001, they have settled in West Texas, where they enjoy farming, family, and Christian outreach.

Kelln, who has a degree in English literature, clearly enjoys the challenge of recalling and recording the events of her extraordinary life in which she disdained conformity and conventional security in favor of personal growth and adventure. She writes with humor and verve, unhesitatingly criticizing herself for her occasional foibles while praising those who have favorably influenced her along the way. She has spiced her writing with old family photos and some excerpts from her husband Al's memoir. Her story concludes with the couple designing their shared tombstone, with no plans for the future except, as Al predicts, "to be even funner." Kelln's is the kind of off-the-beaten-path success story that will appeal to those, Christian and otherwise, who reject the generally accepted norms and cheerfully accept what life has to offer.

Return to USR Home