TULSA, Okla. — For 70 years, Jim and Anne White have been each others sunshine. Singing, praying, and raising a family since 1950, the year they were married.
"I didn't think I would ever have such a beautiful and loving wife," Jim said.
Jim, a city boy from Tulsa, met Anne, a Miss Collinsville back in the day at a church camp. Anne had just turned 18. Jim as 19. Introduced by their pastor, the two were inseparable until the camp ended and Jim had to return to Delaware to finish college.
"He went back to school," Anne said. "But it wasn't too long before he came back and got me."
A proposal was next. But so many years have passed Jim can't remember how it happened.
"I couldn't recall it," Jim said.
"Now isn't that something?" Anne asked. "We just decided so I guess it was a two way thing."
Jim does remember the vehicle that carried the two lovebirds from Oklahoma to Delaware and Dallas, and eventually back home.
"We had a 1936 Ford that the only thing good about it was the motor I rebuilt," Jim said. "That was our first car."
With a focus on God and church, the two raised a family of six children. Jim spent 23 years as a social services supervisor at DHS and worked as a handyman during his off time.
"[I was very] busy, I'd go from one job to another," Jim said.
Eventually, they saved enough to own a laundromat and a second house they rented out. While Jim paid the bills, Anne raised the kids.
"Someone had said, 'You need to get your wife a job of some kind, she needs to be making money,'" Anne said. "And [Jim] said, 'Don't you know that raising children is the biggest job in the world?'"
The kids are gone now. So, it's just the two of them at home. And to this day, they wear their wedding rings. Anne's was purchased with $35 borrowed from Jim's sister.
"She loaned us the money," Anne said. "But we paid her back."
Jim's ring is a replacement. Doctors had to remove the original for a surgery. He said the new one is never coming off.
But Jim does carry something original from 1950.
"I've always carried this in my billfold and it's lasted since we met. It's the original," Jim said. "It's a treasure."
Jim said many billfolds have come and gone, but the marriage certificate remained.
"Well, that's important to me," he said. "That's as good as having pictures in there."
It's a constant reminder that he's 100% committed to the woman who's brought sunshine into his life for the past 70 years.
"She tolerates me quite well and I love it," Jim said.
"Oh, he just likes my cooking," Anne replied.
"Well, she is a good cook," Jim answered.
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