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I was born in Chamblee, Georgia. I grew up in Doraville. I went to grammar school and high school just like we all did. I went to college and achieved a BA Degree in Psychology and Sociology (double major) with a double minor in Spanish and Archeology. During college I also went to modeling school. I always wanted to model but I was not tall enough (5'6").
After college, I went to work with Delta Airlines as a flight attendant. I was based in New Orleans first and came back to Atlanta after 5 months. When I came back to Atlanta I was chosen to do ads for Delta. I was in Newspaper ads, ads with the Falcons, ads in Atlanta Magazine, ads with new planes and more. I became Delta's cover girl for their In flight Catalog. I was the longest running cover girl in their history, almost two years. I modeled their new uniforms and the L1011. I was one of the first flight attendants to qualify to work on the L1011. I could never understand how I was chosen out of all the beautiful girls in Atlanta that worked for Delta to be a company model.. Now that I'm old I guess I can say I did look pretty good. Back then I didn't think so. I wish I had flaunted myself everywhere but I was too shy. It's too late now. If we only knew then while we were young what we know now as we are older.
In July, 1972 I graduated from Delta Flight Attendant School. June 30, 1973, I was married. I continued to work for Delta until 1975. I also worked in scheduling for 8 months scheduling flight attendants for trips and jet recurant training. When I retired, I started showing Afghans and Irish Setters to occupy my time. After Delta, I did file for unemployment insurance for 4 months. Back then you could file a claim even though you quit your job. We needed the money. To this day, Bill uses this fact as a standing joke. Just ask him.
We lived in an apartment until we decided to build a house on the property that my mother gave me. This property was the last acre of property that had been handed down since my ancestors came over from Ireland. I am the sixth generation of the Couey's from Northern Ireland. Bill picked out the type house to build. I believe it was called a salt box house with dormers. He wanted a Cape Code type house. It was a nice , three bedroom, two and a half bath house made from cedar.. We had my Uncle Ross Griffin build our fireplace out of river rock. The only thing I didn't like about it was Bill had it stained red. It looked like a red barn.
I was a founding member of the Dogwood English Setter Club and an officer. I wrote articles for the Southern Dog Advertiser. I was a member of the Atlanta Kennel Club and the Tara Afghan Hound Club. I would supply and cook food for the club "matches" which were practice dog shows. I was usually in charge of the drinks and food if I wasn't showing a dog. I acted as ring steward at various shows. I always loved being out in public with a mission. I traveled to dog shows in 5 states. I was hooked. I often refer to it as being addicted to gambling. I lived to attend dog shows. About this time I also became interested in photography. I started taking pictures for other people of their dogs for ads and became involved with an Afghan publication. I discontinued most of these activities when I became pregnant.
November 10, 1976, I had my son Shawn. I took care of Shawn constantly until we started Applebee's. He went to Day Care no more than 3 times his whole life. As stated previously, he stayed with my parents when we started Applebee's. He would go to dog shows and horse shows with me. He was my constant companion. My first traumatic experience was when he became old enough to start school. That first day watching him get on the bus, I realized that he wasn't mine anymore. That was the worst day of my life. I was so lonely. My baby was gone. I couldn't wait for him to come home.
I continued showing dogs until Applebee's. On June 30, 1983, the day I got out of the first store, I bought my first horse. I actually kept him in my back yard for the summer. "Deja" was like a big dog. It was great having him around. He was moved down the street to a neighbors barn until I bought my second horse, which led me to showing Walking Horses. At one time I had a World Champion Plantation Walker. I had a trainer and my horse stayed at a training barn. I tried to ride at least 3 days a week. This had to be done during the week so that it did not interfere with Bill's "boating" weekends. I had this horse for one year before Bill ever went to see him. I don't think Bill ever even saw me ride a show horse.
TO BE CONTINUED
What I have accomplished after Applebee's is coming up.
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