by Jill Gleeson, Photography by Chelsea Swanger
Anyway, they figure it, Kirby and Bev Beshore are fortunate indeed. Married for 38 years, they live in bucolic Fishing Creek Valley, between Harrisburg and Dauphin. Kirby is senior vice president of investments for Morgan Stanley, a position which enabled Bev to stay home and raise their three children – Monica, Jane, and Dale, who all live in Pennsylvania. They’re also the proud grandparents of two boys – Austin, 12, and Lenny, 3.
Life is good. Which is one of the reasons, according to Kirby, the pair volunteer with The Salvation Army Harrisburg Capital City Region.
“We are blessed and want to be a blessing to others,” he explains. “We have been supporting nonprofits, specifically the Salvation Army, for some time. They are particularly good stewards of the gifts that donors entrust to them. I’ve been on the board for the last 23 years, so I get to see some of the struggles, but I also get to see how well they manage the resources entrusted to them. So, that’s one of the reasons the Salvation Army has been a recipient of our talent, time and resources.”
Bev, who has been volunteering with the organization for about a decade, helps with office work, including data input and, alongside Kirby, counts money dropped in those famous red Christmas kettles. The couple also adopts a family in need each holiday season through the Army, providing a hearty, healthful dinner and presents for under the tree. It’s the very tangible, immediate good that these services – and others, like youth enrichment programs – do that keeps Bev, who also volunteers for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and Hospice of Central Pennsylvania, coming back.
“One of the first times I volunteered during Christmas,” she recalls, “I walked through the breakfast program, and I was just amazed at the number of people from all walks of life who were there. There were families, single men, and women, the elderly, and you could see the appreciation. Just the other day, I heard somebody mentioning visitation to nursing homes. I’ve been there 10 years now, and I didn’t know that the Salvation Army does that. There’s always one more thing that you don’t realize that they’re doing.”
When asked the secrets to a long, happy marriage, the Beshores, who both hail from Pennsylvania and met while attending Gettysburg College, cite the ability to laugh together.
“We do also have similar values,” adds Kirby, “and we get confirmation of that when we’re willing to spend our free time in the same positive manner. I think volunteering together enhances the relationship. And we all benefit from a strong community…none of us got where we are completely on our own. We were helped by a lot of folks, and we’re doing our small part to sort of pay it forward because it’s the right thing to do.”