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Mark and Libby Collier

Libby, 82, was pen pals with Mark, 84, when he was stationed in the South Pacific during World War II. Sparks flew when they finally met.

The buddy: My best friend, Dottie, married a soldier and asked if I would like to write to his good-looking soldier buddy Mark. I replied, “Yes, if he will write me first.” He did.

The goals: As pen pals for more than two years, we found out a lot about each other, especially about our values and goals in life. I wondered: Would I ever meet that wonderful guy?

The bus station: In November 1946, we finally met at the bus station in Atlanta, where Mark was studying after his discharge from the Army Air Force. That day we walked, talked, saw a movie and had a nice dinner. When Mark put me on the bus back to Charlotte I thought I probably wouldn't see him again because he lived in Georgia and I in North Carolina.

The visit: A few months later, Mark came to Charlotte to visit my family and friends. On the third day of his visit he said, “You know that you are going to marry me.” “Oh,” I replied. “Is that what you believe?” “Yep,” he answered. I said, “Only if you ask my mom first.” Well, he did. The wedding was June 11, 1947.

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