Sandra, 57, and Kim, 58, met while attending Auburn University. They lived in the same neighborhood and often did things together in a group of friends. They were 20 and 22 when they married March 18, 1977, and honeymooned in Panama City Beach during Spring Break. The Whittens live in Davidson and Sandra tells their story.
Howdy, neighbor: My roommate Karen had already lived in the neighborhood a year when I moved in, and she introduced our neighbors, one of whom was Kimmy. He was a tall, lanky guy with a stunning smile and killer sense of humor. Everyone was student-poor and most activities were Dutch and group, but Kim and I found ourselves seeking each other’s company and realized sparks were flying.
Getting serious: We “dated” with the group on football Saturdays, free campus movies, visiting Chewacla State Park, picnics and Frisbee, etc. I met his family in late October and they were fun and welcoming. During winter break I went to visit him and one afternoon after a drive in the cold, snowy countryside along the Tennessee River, he proposed.
Student wedding: We didn’t want a long engagement and had the blessings of both our families, so we set our wedding date to coincide with spring break. In today’s world, the odds would not be favorable our union would last, but we’ve celebrated good times, tough times, laughter and sadness. All the emotions life hurls at you, we’ve thankfully weathered.
The secret: I’m asked on occasion what our secret is. I’m not sure the answer, but we decided early on to keep jealousies at bay and to laugh. We’ve been blessed with our son and have lived in six different cities in four different states. It’s certain our time together will conclude as the wedding vows spoken 36 years ago, “Till death do us part.” May we be blessed, again beyond measure, with many happy years ahead. Hilary Trenda
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