The words said Tuesday, Aug. 25, were the same ones uttered on Aug. 25 in 1949. And on every 25th of every month in between. In bed at night, in the hospital, in Mexico on vacation. Christmas, 60 times.
Now, on the 60th wedding anniversary of the Rev. Charles and Mary Alice Mitchell, Tuesday made 720 times the couple have said the vows from memory.
This latest happened in their Rock Hill living room.
In the audience were five Mitchell siblings, accounting for hundreds of years of married Mitchells. There were 10 Mitchell kids from down at Edgemoor, just north of the Chester County line.
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Among them all, 522 years of marriage.
“You might say the Mitchells were brought up to find somebody and stay together,” said William, the oldest, who turned 93 last week and was married 58 years before his wife died.
The Rev. Boyce Wilson of Ebenezer Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church stood behind Charles and Mary Alice, but had little to do but smile.
“Never heard of another couple who renew their vows every month for 60 years,” said Wilson. “They know the drill.”
“I Charles, take thee Mary Alice, to be my lawful wedded wife,” Charles stated. “I do solemnly promise before God and these witnesses that I will love, honor and cherish thee, and that forsaking all others, will faithfully perform unto thee all the duties that a husband owes to his wife as long as we both shall live.”
Then Mary Alice went. She was perfect.
Wilson did have one thing to say: “You may kiss the bride.”
You bet Charles wasted no time.