Kleckners celebrate 65th anniversary

Lester and Betty Kleckner

(Editor’s Note: This story was written by Lester Kleckner on the occasion of the 65th wedding anniversary of Lester and his wife Betty.)

One day during the summer of 1946, on my first paying job helping my aunt prepare for the farmers market, she asked me to walk a half mile (no phone in those days) to a neighbors house and request that he bring her a load of coal for the cold winter days.

To my surprise, when I entered the neighbors house I immediately locked eyes with (she’s the one) the most beautiful blonde, brown-eyed girl that I have ever seen.

The two of use had only brief encounters during 1947 as she finished eighth grade before entering my high school the following year.

Once she was in high school with me, it took only a month for us to have our first date (a movie) — thus the beginning of a six decade relationship was born.

We realized almost immediately that we were “soulmate”.

After dating throughout high school, she finished beauty school and I finished college, we were married five weeks after Valentine’s Day in 1953. Our 65th anniversary is this year.

Now, since my wife is retired as a cosmetologist and I am retired from the military (Army) and as a teacher/professor, we thoroughly enjoy each other, our two daughters and grandsons. We also have fond memories of our travels through most of the United States, Mexico and Canada as well as eight countries of Asia and eleven countries of Europe. Our most memorable travel experience was to the Passion Play of Christ in Oberamageau in 1990.

Just last month, when my wife and I were walking down an asile in Walmart holding hands, a young lady stopped us and said “you two are really inspiring.”

I tend to think that, at present, the two of us are now as much in love as ever. As senior citizens, we like to walk two miles a day (inside in winter and outside in warmer weather) holding hands just as we did many years ago as teenagers in the hills and valleys of Central Pennsylvania. This is what made our courtship special.


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