It just had to be the hottest day of the spring of 1975. Sweating in my long sleeve shirt, rented navy blue suit jacket and bow tie in the non air-conditioned church building was an obvious concern. I was 20 years young and she just turned 21. My father was against this union while her father gave us his blessing and approval to marry. Of course, he wanted his daughter to finish nursing college, as did I for different (financial:) reasons. The wedding ceremony started, my bride, so lovely in her high neck gown, came down the aisle toward me. And then it seemed the ceremony might not end anytime soon as the preacher decided to take advantage of the many relatives and attendees who perhaps looked like they needed a Savior. Finally we spoke our vows and had ceremonially become one.
I truly do not remember much else from that day. The fresh fruit salad, potato salad and lunchmeat were pretty good, as the older church ladies who tend to do such things prepared it. The basement where the reception was held was a bit cooler. We had already lost a number of our guests from the heat of the unrelenting sermon spoken by the gray-haired pastor and the temperature in the sanctuary. The two combined were just too much for some, like one of my work mates who was on a lot of illegal drugs at that time. But what I do remember on that May 24th of 40 years ago was that I knew that I knew I was to marry my soul mate, Mary Elizabeth Mohr. I had not one single doubt that this decision was led by God and that I was obeying God by saying “I do” that day. As we soon celebrate our 40th anniversary, I still do, Mary.