Marriage & Life Partners · Relationships & Dating

A First-Time Bride at 75: Ann and Jerry’s Romance

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(Photo: Brian Kent)

Marriage? “It was never an issue with us; we never talked very much about it,” Ann says. “We never had any insecurities about each other’s feelings that some people have. They think, ‘Well, if you get married, then you’re really committed, since it’s a contract.’” Ann and Jerry never felt they had to marry to be committed.

But last year, during their trip to Rovinj, Croatia, Jerry decided to propose—simply because, Ann says, “he thought it would make me happy and I had done everything else in life.” So, as they sat at an outdoor café in the port at sunset, he suddenly went down on one knee and presented her with a cardboard box bearing a Murano glass ring he’d bought for 10 euros the day before.

“I was speechless and a little scared,” she admits. “He said how much he loved me and that we’d been together for 10 years, and he would like us to be together for 20 more. And I thought, ‘Twenty years more! He’ll be 100!’ She was speechless.

“He looked at me and said, ‘If you don’t say yes, you cannot have the ring.’ So we both started laughing, and I said yes, and we both cried.”

They were married in the Joy of Motion Dance Studio, which is a part of the Atlas Performing Arts Center in D.C., where Ann is on the Board of Directors. They scheduled their wedding for the evening the Performing Arts Center was holding its annual fund-raising gala. Ann and Jerry bought tickets to the gala for all the wedding guests. She “had gala responsibilities to complete,” so she was busy until an hour and a half before the wedding. She used one of the center’s dressing rooms and quickly threw together her bouquet, put on her own makeup, and called a friend to help her get into her dress.

The couple will continue their prenuptial lifestyle: They live in separate houses in Northern Virginia, 35 minutes apart, on weekdays and live together on the weekends. “This is very convenient: During the week he has his activities and I have mine,” she says. “It works for us.”

Has being married made any difference? Ann hesitates. “Not really,” she says. “I’d like to have a different feeling, but I don’t. I said to Jerry, ‘Do you feel any different?’ and he said ‘No, not really, because we’re still living the same life we lived before’ Still, the word ‘husband’ is so foreign to Ann that “when people say ‘husband,’ it’s like a foreign language.”

Their belated honeymoon trip, when they get back in April from being snowbirds in Florida, will take them to the Jazz and Heritage Festival In New Orleans; then, in May, they are off to Geneva and Paris.

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  • Elisa Rodriguez November 20, 2015 at 10:07 am

    Wow! Thaºs really a nice story!

  • Emrah November 18, 2015 at 11:26 am

    believe in love and trust it! So magic story can happen to everyone.

  • Barbara Hammond October 22, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    What a fabulous story! Thanks for sharing.

  • Norma Nelson October 1, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    ……….and they lived happily ever after.
    Loved their story…………

  • TJBattle September 29, 2015 at 8:31 am

    Ah, a great life.

  • hillsmom September 26, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    What a truly touching story. Love it!

  • Ana Palacio September 25, 2015 at 11:09 am

    I love and enjoy this story so much!!!