Juneteenth Committee Announces Grand Marshals

Cathy Cox

J’den Cox

Glenn Ludtke

Cathy Thogmorton

The Junteenth Committee introduces the Grand Marshals for the 2018 Juneteenth Parade.
Cathy Cox
We are proud to honor Cathy Cox as one of the Grand Marshals for 2018. Cathy is a longtime member of Faith Family Church in Fayette. She has numerous gifts including musical talent where she is lead worshiper, singer, keys, and Creative Ministries Director. On her website page she states “God is my Rock, my Fortress, my Foundation! Outside of Him, I have nothing. Without Him, I am nothing. He has proven over and over to be Sustainer, Provider, Healer, Comfort, Refuge, Friend, Deliverer – God. I trust in and rely upon Him for guidance and direction. I am forever grateful for His presence in my life. I am honored that he chooses me to lead people in worship to the place where they can touch Him! It is indeed a privilege to be in His service and I pray that I remain focused on Him, handling the things that belong to Him with great care!”
Cathy is the wife to Michael. They have been married for over 20 years, and prior to that had been “childhood sweethearts who have endured many blessings, joys and trials over the 30 years” they’ve known each other. They are blessed with three boys – Zach, Drae and J’den; and one daughter who is their youngest – Chai. All three boys were avid wrestlers, and we all are familiar with J’den’s success as college wrestler and US Olympian.
Cathy not only shares the musical gifts she has with her church, but often provides music during special occasions such as collegiate sporting events, weddings, and when families request her talents at a home-going celebration during the loss of a loved one. While she and her family reside in Columbia, Cathy’s presence and contributions are well recognized and appreciated by this community. Thank you for sharing with us what God has blessed you with.
J’den Cox
J’den Cox born March 3, 1995, and is the second Cox we want to recognize this Juneteenth Celebration. J’den is the son to Michael and Cathy Cox, and was raised in Columbia, MO. Most of us know his story. J’den is a wrestler who specializes in freestyle wrestling and folk style wrestling. He graduated from David H. Hickman High School in Columbia, where he competed on the wrestling team. J’den was a four-time Missouri state champion for Hickman High School, the first in Missouri prep history to win four state titles in four different weight classes.
J’den was a three-time NCAA wrestling champion for the University of Missouri Tigers and a four-time All-American. He attained his first national title in 2014, and became the first true freshman in the history of Missouri to win the title. After a disappointing 5th place finish in 2015, he came back strong and won the national title again in 2016. A few weeks later, he won the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials at 86 kg.
In 2017, J’den served as a volunteer assistant with the Tigers wrestling program. Currently, he is on the USA Wrestling Team and training in Colorado Springs, CO. We are extremely proud of his accomplishments and dedication to a sport he dearly loves, and fortunate to have a US Olympian with a strong connection to the area.
Glenn Ludtke
Glenn Ludtke grew up on the family homestead on the North Fork of the Nehalem River in Nehalem, Oregon.
In the sixth grade, Glenn began playing piano each Sunday at church and began accompanying instrumentalists for school solo/ensemble contests and played for high school graduations and provided accompaniment for grade school Christmas Pageants. He joined White Clover Grange and became the grange musician at the age of 14, holding a membership for 55 years. In High School, Glenn was a member of the Concert Choir and National Honor Society.
He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in music education at George Fox University where he began studying pipe organ. After teaching, Glenn began studies at the University of Portland in Pipe Organ Performance receiving his Masters.
After graduation, Glenn taught general music, band, choral and strings in the Portland Public Schools. He was asked to take on band and music programs at Harriet Tubman Middle School, becoming the 8th teacher in six years. Three years later, the band program had grown from 17 students to over 200, rising from lowest ranking band to one of the top 18 schools. He also organized the only middle school orchestra in Portland Public Schools.
During his 38 year teaching career, Glenn maintained an organist, choir, hand bell avocation for 57 years. While in Portland, he was organist, developed a choir, started and directed 3 bell choirs.
After a stroke in 2013, on his birthday, Glenn had to resign from teaching and from music work. One day he didn’t have a ride to church, and walked from his home in NW Portland to church in Augustana. He shocked people who asked “who brought you to church?” Glenn says “I am a living testament of someone who has truly been reborn: from paralysis to almost complete recovery. My faith is strong and all things are possible through Christ who strengths me. I am a miracle of God and I thank God for this blessing.” He has since volunteered with stroke patients in Rehab who formerly played piano and need encouragement and practice techniques for regaining muscle memory and retraining brain receptors.
In May of 2017, Glenn bought a home in Fayette, moving here in July. He is a docent at the Ashby-Hodge Art Gallery, pianist at St. Paul, plays in the bell choir at Linn Memorial, plays for services at St. Mary’s Episcopal and St. Joseph Catholic Churches. He is a volunteer at Grey Willows Arts and Antiques and a member of the Fayette Arts Festival Board.
He hasn’t been sitting idly for a reason to find new purpose in life. Glenn chooses to live life to the fullest in the grace of God. This community is blessed to have Glenn as a part of this community.
Cathy Thogmorton
Cathy Thogmorton is the daughter of the late James and Helen Thogmorton. Although Cathy was born in Denver, she was raised a Missouri gal. Her family moved to Fayette in 1955 and lived in McMurry Hall on Central College’s campus, where her father was dorm director. Her parents never left the town and became legends at Central. Her father known by many was affectionately referred to as “Dean T.” In a lot of ways Dean T was the face of Central, and developed a special connection with many of the students that spanned several decades.
Cathy went to Fayette schools and graduated from Central in 1971, a year behind her sister, Louann. She then moved to the Kansas City area and ended up teaching high school English at Lee’s Summit for 25 years. In 2003, Cathy returned home to Fayette to help her folks, who had reached their 80s.
Also in 2003, Central Methodist hired her to produce a Talon magazine to celebrate Central’s sesquicentennial. Apparently they liked it because she has been working as editor of the Talon since then.
During the annual Central Methodist homecoming parade in 2015, Cathy and sister Louann were honored as Grand Marshals. So fitting of an honor given the love and dedication the Thogmorton’s have been to the university.
Cathy has been active in the Betterment Group, Main Street, Fayette Area Historical Association, and PEO; and plays bells for Linn Memorial UMC.
She is the owner of Grey Willows Arts and Antiques on South Main Street, and currently heading up Fayette’s 4th of July in the Park celebration. We are so thankful to Cathy for her continuous support of the annual Juneteenth Celebrations for the past 18 years.

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