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Today is my 55th wedding anniversary. August 18, 1962 Earl and I married at St. Paul’s Methodist Church in Omaha, Nebraska at an evening ceremony. Only a few friends and a couple cousins attended.

Earl left me last year on October 22, 2016. He was in a lot of pain but seemed to realize we were there with him. He was surrounded with family and our wonderful children. He sensed that he was not alone.

I’ve often wondered what all the drama that was our life amounted to? I think it was God’s plan all along to use Earl from a seated position in a wheel chair as His witness.

Earl’s example of triumph over tragedy displayed courage and integrity. We need that in today’s world. Kids need to experience that.

I don’t quite know how it all came to be; especially to me. I was such an unlikely person for this union. Our backgrounds couldn’t have been more different. He was always so sure, sound and strong. Me? I was a city girl with street values; not common, good sense values.

The biggest difference were family. His was large; a mom, a dad and two sisters and aunts, uncles and cousins. There were lots of cousins causing commotion and laughter. Laughter was an unfamiliar sound at my family gatherings. Earl’s dad and mom never drank. I appreciated that because alcohol was the beverage of choice at my house.

Somehow Earl and I managed to build a family, but I do credit him with the good example he set for our children and the strength he gave to me. Our union gave me an opportunity to grow and learn to trust.

Now, today, first thing, I took a sunflower to his resting place. Sunflowers are so cheerful and I think it appropriate for 55 years.

The thing that surprises me is how much I miss him. It hurts. I know someday I will visit him and my eyes won’t fill with tears, but not soon.

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