Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A very long marriage

The St. Paul Pioneer Press newspaper published a story yesterday titled "Till death did they part: Hugo couple's marriage endured for 83 years" by Andy Rathbun. The key graphs in the story are:

"Little did Clarence Vail know when he wed his high school sweetheart in 1925 that those vows would one day make them famous. Clarence and Mayme Vail became local celebrities as their commitment surpassed the 80-year mark, making them contenders for the Guinness Book of World Records and international symbols of a healthy marriage.

"But even a union as strong as the one they shared had to end. Clarence, a longtime resident of Hugo, died Saturday with his wife at his side. He was 101 and had been married to Mayme, 100, for 83 years."


"Together, they begat four generations: six children, 42 grandchildren, 101 great-grandchildren and 43 great-great-grandchildren. Three grandchildren preceded Vail in death."

Wouldn't that be a grand family tree to have on your wall?

This article raises two questions in my mind:

1) What is the longest marriage in recorded history (other than the pre-Noah Biblical marriages!).

2) Was there something in the genes of Clarence Vail and Mayme (whose maiden name was not given) that enabled them to live this long together? Or was their long life together due to their environment, attitudes, and life style?

It's a great human interest story, isn't it?

No comments: