The best part about community newspapers is getting to meet people in the different communities we cover. It's a chance to highlight the little things that make people special. A few months back, I wrote a feature story about four couples who learned they not only shared friendships, but they were all married within a month of each other in 1952.
The four couples collectively had 240 years of marriage. Yep, each couple was married 60 years.
As I sat down with each couple, I learned of how they met. I heard of the struggles they shared, and the love they continued to have after 60 years. There were a few tears, but not many–it was a lot of laughs, some smiles, and most importantly, many memories that were relived. Each couple brought those good times, and even bad times to life. My mind conjured up images of those days…
Like when Herbert and Audra Henderson’s went on their first date and something odd happened. On a hayride, the horse pulling them along died.
Or when Ed Nagy was in the military, separated from his love, Rita. She wrote him letters, and they were what he counted on to get through those days.
Their memories are more than that, they are lessons that we should take with us in our own lives. I know I will.
Frank and Mary Dinga emphasized the importance of cherishing every moment.
“The time went by fast. It just seems like it’s moving faster than it was before,” said Frank. “Maybe we’re moving slower.”
They both laughed.
“Every marriage has its ups and downs, but it’s worth it,” said Mary.
They’ve all experienced loss, sadness, struggles, and happiness. They’ve lived every emotion and feeling, and their memories are everlasting. Most importantly they loved. They loved a lot, and they never stopped loving.
When I asked Richard Stichter what he loved most about his wife Dolores, he sat in silence, before saying he wasn’t sure. Dolores and I laughed, and then, something beautiful happened.
“I don’t know,” he said, pausing for a few minutes. “She’s just my beautiful wife. I’ve loved her since I met her.”
“When I saw you, you were the one. You’ve always been the one . . . It’s just there,” Richard added as he placed his hand over his heart.
It’s something I’ll keep with me and remember forever.