People often wonder what the key is to a long, happy marriage. Is it just the love two people feel for each other, or is it also the respect they have for each other and the fact that they always have time for them?
The secret was known by Zelmyra and Herbert Fisher, who broke the record for the longest marriage.
These two sweethearts were married for 84 years before death tore them apart.
And what they both went through? It was the time of “the Great Depression, World War II, the Civil Rights Movement, and the first black” person to be elected President of the United States.
Herbert died in 2011 at the age of 105, and Zelmyra also died at the same age, in 2013.
But before they died, these two people in love showed us important things about love.
1. What made you realise you could spend the rest of your lives together? Were you at all scared?
Every day that went by made our relationship stronger and more stable. Divorce was never even a thought or a possibility.
How did you know that your partner was the right one for you?
Before we got married, we grew up together and were great friends. Friends are for life, but we were married for life.
Is there anything you would change after being married for 80 years or more?
Nothing about it would be different. We didn’t do anything special to make our marriage work, we just did what was best for each other and our family. (I guess that’s where the answer is…)
4. What would you tell someone who is trying to believe that Mr. Right is out there for them?
Zelmyra: Mine was right next door! He’s never too far away, so keep believing. You’ll know for sure when you meet him.
5. What was the best advice you ever got about marriage?
Respect each other, help each other out, and talk to each other. Be honest, faithful, and true. Love each other with everything you’ve got.
What are the most important things a good partner should have?
Zelmyra: She works hard and takes care of her family well. The 1920s were hard, but Herbert wanted what was best for us and made sure we had it. I got married to a nice guy.
7. What’s your best memory of Valentine’s Day?
Zelmyra: Every day, I make dinner. Herbert left work early and cooked me dinner as a treat. He cooks VERY well.
Herbert: I told her I would make dinner for her and she could take it easy. The smile on her face and the empty plate brightened my day. (This really brightened my day!)
8. You got married when you were very young. How did you both grow as people without growing apart as a couple?
Everyone who plants a seed and brings in the fruit has a party. We are all different, but we can do more when we work together.
9. What is the best thing you remember about your 85-year marriage?
We left behind 5 kids, 10 grandkids, 9 great-grandkids, and 1 great-great grandkid.
10. Does it get easier to talk to people over time? How do you not lose your temper?
Since the kids are older now, we talk more. We can spend time together on the porch or in our rocking chairs.
11. How did you handle it when you had to be physically apart for a long time?
Herbert: When Z was in the hospital having our fifth child, we were apart for two months. It was the hardest time I’d ever had. If Zelmyra’s mother hadn’t helped me with the house and the other kids, I might have gone crazy.
12. What is the most important thing to remember at the conclusion of Bad Relationship Day?
Don’t keep score in your marriage; it’s not a game. God has put you both on the same team so you can win.
13. Is it important to fight?
Never in person! Agree that it’s okay to have different opinions, and fight for what’s important. Learn not to break, but to bend.
14. What is the one thing you both have in common that is the most important?
We both believe in God and are Christians. Marriage means making a promise to the Lord. Every day, we pray with and for each other.
The love story of Zelmyra and Herbert is very moving.
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