By Emily Gallagher
Times West Virginian
Not one kid, not two kids, not even six kids.
The Cox family has seven kids from ages 6 to 21.
With five of their seven children living at home, David and Catherine Cox use organization and communication to handle everyone’s busy schedules.
“It’s a busy schedule,” David said. “We have a mom and dad schedule plan.”
David is a manufacturing engineer at Aurora Flight Sciences, where his specialty is high performance composite structures. Catherine is a stay-at-home mother but enjoys volunteering in the community.
“My wife is a wonderful homemaker,” David said. “She’s currently helping out at the cemetery that’s back behind the center of town that’s struggling.”
The parents of seven stay involved with the community. Catherine helps with the Parent Teacher Organization at Watson Elementary and David is involved in Marion County Youth Soccer.
“We’re both involved with the Latter-day Saints church as well,” David said.
Their oldest son Brad attends West Virginia University; 19-year-old Steven is in Mexico serving a mission for his church.
“Steven will be gone for two years serving on that mission,” David said. “Brad is very bright — he’s a National Merit Scholar.”
As for the rest of the kids, David said his older children, 17-year-old Katelyn and 15-year-old Sarah, help out a lot and are self-sufficient when it comes to getting ready for school in the mornings.
“They get up at 5 o’clock every morning because they go to seminary class then they’ll go to school,” David said.
Catherine gets the younger kids — 12-year-old Jacob, 9-year-old Rebecca and 6-year-old Samuel — ready for school in the mornings.
After-school activities play a big part in the family’s hectic schedule, with the five kids who live at home each participating in a sport or band.
In addition, Katelyn was crowned homecoming queen at Fairmont Senior High School this year.
“She plays volleyball on the FSHS varsity team and she plays lacrosse,” David said.
Luckily, the family lives near FSHS, which helps when Katelyn has to go to practice.
“For volleyball, she just jumps out and walks across the street. That’s pretty handy,” David said.
Sarah plays the flute in the FSHS band.
“This year she started participating as a guard person,” David said. “She also plays lacrosse with the high school team.”
Jacob plays lacrosse, the saxophone for West Fairmont Middle School and recreational soccer for Marion County.
“I am his assistant coach for his soccer team,” David said.
Rebecca is in third grade at Watson Elementary and also participates in soccer.
“She plays in the Under 10 girls’ league in Marion County,” David said. “I’m also the assistant coach for her team.”
The youngest, Samuel, is in first grade at Watson Elementary and plays soccer in the Under 8 league. Again, David is the coach.
“I also serve as a member of the Marion County Youth Soccer Board,” David said.
For David, being a coach and a board member takes up three or four days a week.
“I’m also the person responsible for field maintenance,” David said. “I spend one day every two weeks striping the field or any other issues that might come up at the field.”
Jacob and Rebecca have soccer practice at the same location at almost the same time, which helps when Dad coaches both teams. An activity bus sometimes picks up the kids for their practices.
“All of my kids have been able to jump on the activity bus for practices at different locations around town,” David said.
Even with family members going in different directions, David and Catherine like to have dinner as a family every night. Some nights, though, there might be one or two family members unable to be there.
“It really comes down to guaranteed family dinner on Saturday evening and Sunday,” David said. “We really do think family is a major deal. For us it’s about spending time together.”
The family sets aside one night each week as family night. When they get some free time, the Cox clan enjoys playing a family soccer game.
“Sometimes it gets pretty hectic,” David said. “Once in a while you have to drop someone off here and go pick someone up there, but most of the time the two of us can get it taken care of.”
Email Emily Gallagher at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @EGallagherTWV.