John and Ann Betar are the longest married couple in America, and are planning on celebrating their 81st wedding anniversary on November 25.
The Worldwide Marriage Encounter named the Betars as the longest married couple. John, 102, and Ann, 98, were married in 1932.
Their marriage got off to an interesting start as they fled their Bridgeport, Conn. neighborhood to elope, avoiding the plans of Ann’s father to marry her off to a man 20 years older than her, reported Reuters.
“Everyone was hopping mad, and my wife’s aunt consoled my father-in-law by telling him not to worry, the marriage won’t last,” said John, chuckling.
They got to know each other as John, then 21, drove Ann to her high school in his Ford Roadster.
“That’s why she married me, she loved that car,” John joked.
The couple married during the Great Depression, and to give context, President John F. Kennedy was just a high school student.
“We have watched the world change together,” said John Betar. “The key is to always agree with your wife.”
They now live in Fairfield, Connecticut and are happily married. They have five children, 14 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren. And they love their family.
“That’s what makes life what it is. We were fortunate enough to live long enough to see this … and it’s really one of the most gratifying things in the world to see your great-grandchildren, to see your grandchildren become adults,” Ann Betar told the Fairfield Citizen.
“That’s what keeps us alive. We live for them,” John Betar said.
As for marriage advice, the couple has some.
“Be considerate of one another and live within your means and be contented is about it, and life will take care of itself. We are fortunate to have all that we have and may everyone be as fortunate as we are,” John Betar said.