Established in 1959
“When I saw you I fell in love, and you smiled because you knew.” ~William Shakespeare
Myron and Birdie Paine met in a church group for singles in South Dakota, he had just come back from staff. On their first date he walked her home from a party and hayride where she reached out and took his hand. She did not want to walk home alone with the other guy’s that offered to walk her home. From that first walk they began to go out for coffee often, slowly getting to know each other. He proposed to her on Valentine’s Day with a heart shaped chocolate box, asking her to marry him. However, Birdie declined and said she had to think about it. It took a week before she said yes to his marriage proposal. Once she said yes they both went together to choose the ring. Since the day Myron walked Birdie home he remembers everything as if it was yesterday and since then he knew she was the one for him. On the other hand Birdie was a little more analytic about everything. Over time, throughout several conversations over coffee, one date in particular stands our, he stated that he wanted to be married in the summer by his twenty-fifth birthday. She knew he was the one by looking into his eyes and knowing he would be a good partner for her. Having several things in common and enjoying each others company were added bonuses.
They were married on June 29th, 1959 in Freeman, South Dakota at Salem Mennonite Church. Every week they went to dances while they were in school. They will be celebrating sixty wonderful years of marriage this coming year. Glenn Miller and Philly 500 were some of their favorite musicians. Myron stated that Birdie was a good cook and housewife. As a young couple they enjoyed many things together. He also stated that he appreciates her during some tough times with depression. He is thankful for Birdie. She stated she just liked doing things together and appreciated that Myron was a good provider for his family.
From a big house to a small apartment to being here together at Carlton, the secret to a lasting marriage is learning to adapt and still enjoy each other’s company. Being able to share memories and reminisce over time. They have learned to let things go and always remain forgiving, they believe in not going to sleep mad at one another. Picking the right battles and keeping good communication is critical for a relationships success. Since Myron has retired they have started a tradition of having snacks together at ten in the morning and three in the afternoon while enjoying music.
Special appreciation to Activity Assistant, Melissa Alvarez who interviewed Charles and Esther and put their love story into words.