True love never dies, it lasts until the last breath. It does not succumb to obstacles, but it patiently endures and becomes stronger.
While romances and relationships have been dramatically distorted and divorces have been on the rise in the past several decades, true love stories still impress all of us.
Recently, former U.S. president Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn Carter celebrated their 74th wedding anniversary and became the longest-married presidential couple in history.
They surely know the secret to building a long-lasting relationship! Jimmy and Rosalynn, at 95 and 92 years old, officially hold the title for the longest-married presidential couple in American history, and are “still going strong at 26,765 days.”
They got married on July 7th, 1946 in a Methodist church in their hometown of Plains, Georgia, but they knew each other their entire lives. They were neighbors, and Rosalynn was the best friend of Jimmy’s sister, Ruth.
Rosalynn says she first fell in love with Jimmy before she actually really knew him:
“I always said I fell in love with a photograph of him on (Ruth’s) bedroom wall.”
On the other hand, Jimmy says he fell in love with her on their very first date:
“She was beautiful and innocent, and there was a resonance. I kissed her on that first date. I remember that vividly.’’
From that very moment, he knew she was the one.
In his 2015 autobiography A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety, she described her as: ” remarkably beautiful, almost painfully shy, obviously intelligent, and yet unrestrained in our discussion on the rumble seat of the Ford Coupe.”
The next morning, he told his mother he’d found the woman he wants to spend the rest of his life with. He said that he “was never doubtful about her”, so that Christmas, he told Rosalynn he loved her, and he asked her to marry him.
They were wed when Jimmy was 21 and Rosalynn was 18, after he graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy. They got their first son, Jack, by their first anniversary. They have two more sons, Chip and Jeff, and 14 years later, they got a daughter, Amy.
Rosalynn explains that her husband has been her biggest support in life, always encouraging her to pursue her dreams and risk in life. They have worked on several projects together in an attempt to make the United States a better place.
In 2015, Jimmy was diagnosed with cancer, but he fully recovered after the surgery and the treatment.
The 39th former president is now 95, so he is the oldest living president in U.S. history.
“It’s hard to live until you’re 95 years old. I think the best explanation for that is to marry the best spouse: someone who will take care of you and engage and do things to challenge you and keep you alive and interested in life.”
Nowadays, they savor every moment together, and share their hobbies, they go skiing together, play tennis, and enjoy bird watching.
They read the Bible together every night and if they are separated, they still read the same chapter, even if they are “five thousand miles apart”.
What a love story! Happy 74th wedding anniversary, Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter!