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Couples | Phenix City Family Photography

I love a good love story. Especially when it's my own grandparents. Last summer (August 2018) I decided I wanted to capture these two together and tell their story. After 58 years of marriage I think they can teach us a thing or two about life and love.

Elderly couple holding hands

Their story began in 1958 when my grandmother and her friend Sandy were standing on a bridge watching the naval ships that were docked. In her own words.....

How did you meet?

"We met on the bridge. Sandy and I were on the bridge and he came up to us talking to us. We were on the bridge looking at his ship docked there. He said he could show it to us so we went over there to where it was and he took us on board; showed us his destroyer. {insert laughter} Then they decided to go to seaside park and we walked there, but this other guy from New York came along. Supposedly he wanted to be with me, but I didn't like him because he was too pushy. I hate pushy people. So anyway, then Sandy that night, she and Jim made a date to meet down there at the park where we first met. That was the 4th of July.

I'd been dating a boy for a couple of years. He was talking about getting married and I didn't want to marry him so I broke up with him. He didn't want to work - told me previously how he had put a blotter in his shoe so it'd seem like he had a high temperature so he could get out of work and go home. I wasn't going to support some old lazy man. He did that and it didn't impress me, so i knew i didn't want to marry him.

Anyway, so that evening Sandy said she had a date with him and she was going to walk down to the park to meet him. I said let me walk down there with you and after you meet him, I'll take off on my own and ride a few rides then go home. I didn't feel like staying home all evening.

so we walked down there and she met him. When we were on the bridge, about to cross the bridge to go into the park, she saw her dad. Her mom and dad were in the car and her dad was mad because he thought she was dating some no good sailor. He found out she had a date with him from the mom, so they came down to get her. They pulled over behind the rides, started yelling and screaming at each other and took off, left me standing there with him. He wanted to spend the evening, so I said what the hell, I wasn't doing nothing. He was cute. He acted like a little boy. He wasn't like a mean person. {her oldest daughter laughs and states "because he was fresh off the farm. Literally") we went over there and just talked. We walked around and talked all night - until about 10, 10:30 or so. I had to go home sometime. Then we took the bus home and said goodnight. He said he wanted to see me again; wanted write letters to me.So then he started writing and coming to see me when he had time. I was 17, just graduated high school, and he was 19. I'd just turned 17 in May and graduated June 2.

We'd been going together about 3 months or so and he asked me to marry him. And so by that time we'd been seeing each other all the time, so i said yes, but we were engaged for 2 years because i didn't want to get married when i was young. Actually I wanted to wait until I was 23, but my mom wanted me to get married. Guess she was afraid of me getting pregnant or something. {Insert laughter}"

How did he propose?

"I don't remember, we were just walking along outside the building where I live, he just pulled the ring out and asked me to marry him. There was a courtyard. We lived in apartments. All the buildings were made into apartments and they were sold to individual people. They were nice."

How did you know he was the one?

By that time i was hopelessly in love. The way he made me feel, that's all. Matters of the heart."

You've been together 58 years? Whats the key to a long happy marriage?

Mostly to think of the other person before you do yourself.

What do you love the most about him?

He's a kind person, a decent person, a decent man. Back then he was really good looking

(I asked him what he loves the most about her... "No certain thing.")

I was nice looking too, and a nice person. considerate and kind, dependable.

What annoys you the most about him?

His stubbornness.

(When asked the same question, his response: "A little bit of everything." {laughs})

I give him pills, that's what he doesn't like.

What values are important in marriage?

Honesty, dependability, trust, and consideration.

This session took place right in their front yard. Nothing fancy, but I will forever cherish these memories. I encourage everyone to sit down with their parents and grandparents, if you haven't already, and listen to them and learn their story.

Elderly couple smiling at each other while holding hands
Loving grandparents hugging

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