Another year and Chandler is still here. Chandler continues to serve as LLYC Senior Director this summer, moving out to the Canyon just like he has every summer since 1995. This year he will continue to support Beck and Jacqueline at Singing Hills and Karla and Tom at Echo Valley.
Behind every great man is a great woman, and Chandler is no exception. His wife, Margo, serves as the LLYC Healthcare Coordinator and has built the Healthcare program from scratch, spending countless hours recruiting and training LLYC doctors and nurses. She also works part-time in the off season as a registered nurse at Peterson Ambulatory Surgical Center in Kerrville.
Chandler and Margo have three over-the-top children who have all served at LLYC for many summers in many capacities: Marshall (Texas A&M University, Class of 2015), Maggie (Texas A&M University, Journalism major), and Mollie (Texas A&M University, Business major).
God is good. He has changed many lives through the Pruitts. They are looking forward with great excitement and anticipation to another crazy summer.
Tom grew up spending his summers at a Christian boys camp in upstate New York. For him, it was always worth the 19-hour drive from his home in Clemson, South Carolina. His experiences there led him to get his degree in Recreation and Youth Ministry at Southern Wesleyan University in South Carolina.
After a few years living in Munich, Germany, teaching ESL and doing youth ministry, Tom chased a woman to Texas, married her, and went into full-time Christian camping. He was a director at a camp in east Texas for four years and then spent two years in residential construction before the opportunity to work at LLYC surfaced, which he couldn’t refuse.
He loves fly-fishing, playing basketball (he’s a six foot six), reading to his kids, watching Clemson football, and building things with his hands. He and his wife, Brynn, have three children: a daughter, Piper, and two sons, Finley and Rowan. During the year they live in Fredericksburg, where Brynn works full-time in the home and part-time as a teacher. Tom loves camp ministry because of how formative and rewarding it can be for campers and for his college age staff.
Beck graduated from Texas A&M University in 2002 with a degree in Exercise Physiology. Previously, Beck served on staff with Young Life and as a young adult pastor at a church.
Beck and his wife, Hayley have two children, Judah and Eva. As a family, they love spending time outdoors, jumping on the trampoline, having loud meals around their dinner table and enjoying all the craziness life tends to bring on a daily basis. Of course, they count down the days anticipating when they get to move to the Canyon and live the camp life all summer long! He often says he has the best job in the whole world.
When Beck is not working or with his family, he enjoys reading, fishing, and long bike rides in the woods.
LONGHORN FOOTBALL ENTHUSIAST ASPIRING CHEF FRIEND FOR LIFE
Austin native Jacqueline Brustkern first came to LLYC the summer after her freshman year at UT. Jacqueline recalls having a real desire to work at a camp and had opportunity to interview with quite a few. But it was her interview with Karla, along with a number of LLYC friends, that ultimately swayed her decision to accept a temporary full time position at LLYC. “It wasn’t a checklist of my abilities or personality,” says Jacqueline. “It was an authentic conversation. I felt like Karla really wanted to know me—which I learned is a true reflection of LLYC.” Having served as an EV counselor, SH Crew Boss, SH Assistant Girls’ Director, and LLYC Intern, Jacqueline brings diverse experience and relationships to her current role.
Jacqueline jokes that her friends might describe her as a bit indecisive. But when the position at LLYC presented itself, she knew with absolute clarity it was the right fit. Her friends were shocked at her quick decisiveness—maybe for the first time ever! Jacqueline is excited to invest in something she cares so deeply for—a place and ministry she loves. A place to which God keeps bringing her back.
With a Bachelor of Science and Arts in Nutrition, Certification in Business Foundations and a Minor in Kinesiology from the University of Texas, Jacqueline is excited to continue serving at LLYC.
LLYC LIFER SESQUIPEDALIANIST LOVER OF TEA AND CONVERSATION
Wylie’s happiest summer memories are all tied to LLYC, where she was a camper from 2001 to 2007. As is often the case, her time on Work Crew at Echo Valley in 2008 was her favorite summer yet; it opened up wholly new ways to think about ministry and the call to hospitality.
These twin interests led Wylie to Baylor University, where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in 2013, and later Duke Divinity School, where she received an MDiv. In addition to getting to live in Durham, North Carolina, her graduate studies offered Wylie the opportunity to continue working at LLYC in the summer, where she led the Singing Hills kitchen for six years.
Wylie and her husband Grant have an eleven-year-old Australian Shepherd named Kipper, with whom they enjoy going for walks and watching The Office. They love having folks over for supper and playing board games. Wylie is a (slow) runner, an (avid) reader of just about anything, and a (novice) seamstress. She loves being part of the LLYC team and, though an introvert, will happily talk over a cup of tea anytime.
SECOND GENERATION LLYC LIFER HARDWORKING PROBLEM SOLVER LOVER OF GAMES AND GOOD TIMES
Dayton’s history with LLYC goes way back. In fact, his history began here. His parents met at camp and were on staff in the 1980’s. Dayton grew up hearing stories about camp and was eventually a camper for three years at Echo Valley. He went on to spend many summers on staff. He was on Program Crew. He was a Singing Hills Counselor for two summers. He was on leadership staff as a PC Boss, and he was a Guy’s Director for two summers. After he graduated from Texas A&M with a degree in Biomedical Sciences, he became an LLYC intern for a year in 2013. That fall he followed in his parent’s footsteps by marrying his camp sweetheart, Rachel, and they both took jobs in San Antonio. It didn’t take long, though, for them to find their way back to Kerrville to work for the organization that has meant so much to them and has been such a part of their story.
From 2016 to 2019 Dayton worked at Laity Lodge Family Camp managing operations and program staff. He’s excited to incorporate what he’s learned from that experience into the LLYC program. Dayton’s deep knowledge of camp serves him well as he works to oversee and improve our program operations and activities as well as lead our operational summer staff.
Dayton enjoys all things outdoors, loves to play games of any kind, works constantly on his 1907 fixer-upper home, and kills time with his friends, his dog, Mack, or by enjoying a good story.
Melody provides office coordination and support for Laity Lodge Youth Camp. She loves her role in assisting the directors with hiring processes for new and seasoned counselors and summer staff.
Melody attended Texas Tech University and studied Nutrition and Early Childhood Education. Working with kids is in her blood as she found her love for residential camping during her college summers at Texas Lion’s Camp in Kerrville. The most cherished job she has had in her life was teaching for Houston ISD’s Outdoor Education Center, a magnet school serving children in Houston.
LLYC has provided important spiritual guidance and support to her family for the past ten years during her children’s summer seasons at camp. She is pinching herself that she is part of this team. She loves everything about LLYC and the history of the HEB Foundation!
Melody grew up in Colorado and has spent a good part of life in Texas. She considers herself 1/2 Texan and 1/2 Coloradan. She is the mother of three kids, Ella, Niles, and Violet Josephine, and lives in Boerne where she also owns and is the lead designer for Nila Melott Luxe Floral.
Emily loves our LLYC parents and campers. She orchestrates the registration process, blesses campers with the news of scholarships and fills camp with as many campers as possible. Emily, her husband, Chastan, and their twin boys, Paxton and Brody, live in Kerrville and enjoy everything “boy.” Most evenings and weekends, they can be found sword fighting anywhere the boys have free rein. The boys love organized sports—soccer, karate, basketball, and baseball.
Emily, her mom, and two sisters also own a children’s clothing boutique in downtown Kerrville, LulaBelle’s Pirates & Pretties. The girls love the extra time to get to be together, not to mention shop for the store (and their combined eight kiddos).
Emily graduated from Tivy High School and Schreiner University with a B.A. in Psychology. She has a deep desire for relationships. She understands parents’ needs and wants to serve them as well as possible. Emily loves our campers and their parents well. Her joy and love for life are contagious.
I started coming to LLYC the summer of 1983 as an 8-year-old camper at Singing Hills in Cabin 1. I absolutely loved every minute of it and never wanted to leave. Dan Roloff and Chandler Pruitt were there that year. At Cross Talk, I heard the story of Christ wanting a relationship with us, and this is where my life was changed.
How many summers have you spent in the Canyon?
After finishing up as a camper in Cabin I at Echo Valley, I was on Work Crew, then I was a C.I.T. (Counselor in Training). I loved the time I spent with my campers and keep up with them to this day! I also spent time as a Work Crew Boss and then a Singing Hills Girls’ Director.
What do you love most about Laity Lodge Youth Camp?
I love that LLYC never changes. My daughters now attend and, I see the same kind of counselors that were there when I was a camper; those counselors who really care about each of the kids and spending time with them and loving them well and just having fun with them. The same spontaneity and creativity is also still there, making each day different. When we drop our daughters off, I know without a doubt they are going to have the best two weeks of their lives and make lifelong friends. I can see now how God used LLYC to impact me as a child and to help shape who I became as an adult.
How does LLYC still impact your life today?
Today I am a mom of three girls. We all spend time together at Family Camp and our girls attend LLYC in the summers. My husband and I try to get away at least once a year to attend a retreat at the Lodge. We love spending time together with our family and friends in the Canyon and have made many memories there through the years.
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