On June 3, Bobby and Marie, both 78 years old, married in a simple outdoor ceremony at Fifth Avenue Healthcare where they are both residents undergoing rehabilitation.
Suzanne Stanley, administrator at the facility, said the couple met in February and quickly became fond of each other.
“They started talking while they were doing therapy and the next thing you know they were requesting to sit together in the dining room,” Stanley said. “It was very sweet to see how much they cared for each other.”
She said about three weeks ago the couple approached her with a request to be married at the facility.
“We always want our residents to feel like this is their home,” Stanley said. “So we helped them plan the whole thing. They chose everything about the wedding, we just helped with the details.”
Marie and Bobby bought each other’s rings, she picked out a beautiful green dress with a floral print, cakes and food were prepared and a fellow resident at Fifth Avenue Healthcare, a friend of Marie’s, did the flowers.
And having the ceremony at the facility held even more meaning for Marie since she worked there for 20 years.
For Marie and Bobby, it was the perfect day to exchange vows. And he doesn’t see anything unusual about tying the knot at his age.
“She paid me to do it,” the Cave Spring native joked. “We fell in love and we talked about getting married and one day I asked her to be my wife.”
And Marie said ‘I will.’
“Because I love him,” she said. “I want to spend the rest of my life with him.”
The couple now share a room at Fifth Avenue Healthcare where “Newlyweds” posters decorate the wall and a large congratulatory sign hangs outside their door.
“Everyone here has been so good to us,” Marie said. “They’ve been helpful and friendly. The entire staff has been so nice.”
Marie’s granddaughter, Kandi Holcombe, said she is thrilled that her grandmother has found someone who makes her happy.
“She was married to my grandpa for 60 years,” Holcombe said. “After he passed away a few years ago we were worried about her. But from the start of this relationship they had my blessings. At her age I think it’s wonderful for her to find love and happiness.
“And the wedding day was so special,” Holcombe added. “There were so many family and friends there. There were children, grand children, great-grandchildren and great great-grandchildren. It made my heart smile.”
For now, the couple plans to stay at Fifth Avenue Healthcare for a while and may decide to get a place of their own. But they’re surrounded by friends and plenty of activities. They exercise each day, play Bingo and enjoy the entertainment provided for residents there.
And though they’re not the traditional model of a newly married couple, Marie and Bobby still have many of the same things to learn about each other that younger newlyweds do.
“But we’ve got our love and our faith,” Marie said. “And sometimes that’s all you need.”