Written By Sara O'Dell and Mallory O'Dell
Photos By Tori Harper
Unlike a typical window that allows others to view outside and cannot control the amount of light that comes through, a stained-glass window allows one to see the beauty of the building and controls the light that is allowed to enter. This is how we picture Nathan and Sloan Mayer in our community, as a couple that loves each other unconditionally and provides others with a shining example of the unselfish love the Lord has given them.
As a couple, they exemplify the light for all those are who are in darkness by prevailing through the troubles of life. They do so in such a way that it makes people wonder if they would have the strength to overcome not only hurdles, but the mountains of life and death that Sloan and Nathan face. With their daughter, Willow Gail Mayer, the three make some of the most inspirational designs that communicate to all those who see and experience them.
As Sloan delivers dinners and baked goods around her neighborhood to gentlemen whose wives have recently been placed in nursing facilities or to mother’s who have recently undergone cancer treatments, Nathan is always nearby sitting on a tractor and phoning her every half-hour to check-in. Sloan has an unequivocal way of seeing the best in everyone and every situation and never fails to provide uplifting scripture or words of encouragement that can bring light to any experience and calm every worry.
When people in the community need a reliable person to call, Nathan always answers. He not only provides a helping hand and a strong back, but a half smile and chuckle that always leaves you smiling and knowing that you are loved. Nathan is a humble man that demonstrates the ability to be quick to hear, slow to speak, and even slower to anger.
The Mayers truly embody the quote “Service is the rent we pay for living.” – Marian Wright Edelman; they are an ideal illustration of what it means to serve their community and put others before themselves.
Like a stained-glass window, these two tell many stories of family, friendship, and victories. As a freshman in college, Sloan was eighteen years old when she was diagnosed with her first brain tumor. Doctors stated that this was a rare occurrence and that she needed to have it removed quickly. With family and boyfriend, Nathan Mayer, by her side, she traveled to Duke University for her first brain surgery. During a slow recovery that required Sloan to learn to walk again, doctors discovered that she had a genetic disorder called Neurofibromatosis. This diagnosis meant a lifetime of struggles, surgeries, and uncertainty; but Nathan and Sloan, through their faith in the Lord, began to build a relationship that could withstand any storm and has continued to prevail over darkness.
Their marriage was one of support of each other for the first five years. Sloan finished her bachelor’s degree in Social Work and Nathan worked daily on the farm in ever-changing times to provide for their family and the community. Sloan became the ambassador for South Carolina over the Children’s Tumor Foundation and went to Washington to advocate for funding. Nathan was an active member of the American Farm Bureau Federation and Dairy Farmers of American in a dedication to provide exceptional quality and business growth in our community.
The two longed for children but as part of Sloan’s medical condition, childbearing would have stressed her body to a point of trauma. After applying to several adoption agencies, it was heartbreaking to understand that children from these facilities could be taken away without warning and the costs were enormous.
Through surrogacy, Nathan and Sloan Mayer were blessed with Willow in August 2016. Willow was born singing and continues to be their daily light through life. Nathan and Sloan have been married for ten years and over the last decade, several lives have been touched by their generosity and grace. As the Lord is the center of their marriage, family, and home, blessings continue to fill the stained-glass windows of their lives for all to see.