John and Lorna celebrate 60 happy years!

Thornhill Manor retirement village residents John and Lorna Fell will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary on 30 June.

John says this ‘fantasy romance’ started when Lorna went to watch the Jeppe 1st XV play their old rival K.E.S one Saturday afternoon in 1955. Jeppe won comfortably!

“We met and bingo! However, the romance was short-lived as I stayed in Hillbrow and Lorna in Kensington,” says John.

Fast forward to December 1957… Home time at the Greatermans’ sale in End Street.

“I took the lift to the ground floor and Lorna was in the lift. I walked her to the tram stop on Main Street and the veil was lifted, however, the next five years were a roller coaster with lots of challenges, bust-ups and many unforgettable memories, especially the February holidays in Scottburgh,” says John.

John left Greatermans in December 1959 and joined packaging company Kohler in January 1960.

“I proposed to Lorna in front of her father, who had just dressed into his ‘jarmies’, in December 1960,” says John.

They were married at the Belgravia Methodist Church on Saturday, 30 June, 1960. “We partied at our reception at Jeppe Quondam and then drove to Andrew’s Motel in Volksrust. Our ultimate destination was the La Crete Hotel on the South Coast. Where else?”

The couple had two sons, Craig and Gavin, and a daughter, Leigh, and have six grandchildren.

“Highlights of our lives, besides our honeymoon, was a trip to the USA, visiting Orlando, New Orleans and the Big Apple! Our spoiler was a seven-day crossing of the Atlantic on the QE2… Not to mention our many trips to the Kruger National Park,” says John.

While ‘life is not a bed of roses’ and the couple have had their fair share of squabbles, John says the secret to their long and happy marriage is not saying anything they will later regret. “We tolerate each other’s shortcomings, never mind the result. And last, but by no means least, we still love each dearly,” he adds.

The couple lived in Glendower area most of their lives, before moving to Thornhill Manor in 2003.

“Just for the record, Lorna tells me that we have a close circle of four friends who will all be celebrating their 60th wedding anniversaries within the next eight months. Not bad when stats record only 1% of marriages reach the Diamond Jubilee stage!” says John.

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