Judi and Steve’s Love Story Was Worth the Wait

Posted by Monica Hoel
It’s a story of romance…and perfect timing…and football

Remember when Paul McCartney seemed surprised that we haven’t had enough of silly love songs? Well…we’re also not tired of sweet love stories, so sit back and listen to a great one.

Steve Crabtree finished at E&H in 1972. From 1968-1970, he dated a young woman named Judi Kyle. They met because one day Judi saw Steve washing his car without his shirt on and she asked a friend who he was. A week later she spotted him walking across campus and ran over to ask him if he was in her Spanish class. Judi adds, “I knew he wasn’t.”

But in 1970, Judi quit college to become a flight attendant. Steve stayed at Emory & Henry to graduate. And that was the end of their romance.

Or was it?

Judi was married for forty years, and her husband passed away in 2015. Steve has never been married. Judi recently told the rest of the story. “The last time we saw each other was in 1971. No contact whatsoever for 46 years. But we reconnected on Facebook in 2016. When I had to go back to Bristol for a family event, I sent him an email at the last minute to see if he wanted to come over for lunch. After many trips back and forth, he moved away from Tazewell, Virginia, to be with me in California. We are now living together and keeping up with Emory & Henry.”

Together, they live-stream all the E&H football games. In fact, that’s how E&H reconnected with Judi and Steve. Judi’s name kept showing up as one of the participants in our “online tailgate” events, so we checked in with her to get an update.

Steve is a former E&H football player. Judith says she had kept a little memento of his playing days until just recently. “The crazy thing is, I had kept Steve’s Emory & Henry football jersey (#20) until just three years ago. I had moved from Chicago to California to New York and back to California with his jersey. I threw it out a year and a half before reconnecting with him.”

Before moving to California, Steve attended most of the E&H home football games. Last fall, Steve would be at a home game in Emory while Judi streamed the game on her iPad in California. These days, the couple are happily following the Wasps online – together. “We both are so happy and amazed that this has happened…and all because of those Wasps.”

  • Judi Kyle August and Steve Crabtree are all smiles.
    Judi Kyle August and Steve Crabtree are all smiles.
“We both are so happy and amazed that this has happened…”
Judi Kyle August

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