68 years of marriage and a trip down memory lane

Posted at 6:42 AM, Dec 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-23 10:07:55-05

68 years of laughter, tears, happiness, and sadness.

"You have to have real true love," Lula Mae Reed says. "If you have real true love you can step over all of the obstacles."

Lula Mae and Jimmy Reed met when they were just 16.

Jimmy says he noticed Lula Mae at midnight mass.

"We didn't actually meet," Lula Mae says. "He saw me and said, 'That's the girl I want'."

"That's the girl I like," Jimmy adds.

While they did not speak that night, fate would bring them together two years later.

Jimmy says that this time he was not going to let her get away.

"You know the saying you always want a tall, dark, and handsome boy? He was tall with dark hair and so clean cut," Lula Mae says.

Two years after that second chance meeting, there were talks about getting married.

But again, fate intervened.

"I came back from work and Lovely was pressing their clothes," Jimmy says. "She handed me a letter written in red was the word 'Greetings' and I knew what it was."

"It was very depressing in more ways than one," Lula says. "We planned to get married and thought that we'd have our future together."

The wedding they had hoped for would have to wait. And when Jimmy came back home on furlough for Christmas, the two were finally wed.

While the wedding was not what either of them envisioned, what really mattered to the couple was that they were finally together.

"He left and went back on maneuvers in Fort Hood," Lula Mae says. "I went to live with him in Lawton, Oklahoma. We lived there, together, until he went overseas."

Once Jimmy was released from the Army, he and Lula Mae quickly built a life together in Iota. A life that, over the years, included three children, six grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

"We are blessed with God's help," Lula Mae says. "Faith is what pulled us through a lot of obstacles in our lives."

As you could imagine, 68 years is packed with many memories. And Jimmy and Lula Mae say the very best moments are the ones spent together.

"He could've had a job making more money years back, working in the oilfield and being away from home, he chose to be home and taking less," Lula Mae says. "I don't think we've ever had any regrets. We were poor, but happy. We had our three children and were together every night."

68 years after they said "I do," their love is still going strong.

While they can give scores of advice on how to keep a marriage together, for them, the secret to decades of love is quite simple.

"You argue but you never fight," Jimmy says.

"I called it a heavy discussion," Lula Mae adds.

And regardless of the what the argument entails, Jimmy says every "heavy discussion" should always end with, "Yes, Ma'am."