LAFAYETTE TWP. — Edward Roberts has kissed his wife, Clara, before bedtime every night for the last 76 years.
She hasn’t been able to talk much recently because she’s suffered several strokes, but Roberts said she doesn’t have to say a word.
“I ask her if she still loves me, and she nods her head ‘yes’ all the time,” Roberts said Friday at the Egypt Road home he’s shared with Clara since the 1940s.
The Robertses celebrate their 76th anniversary Sunday. The two don’t have much planned for the big day, but Roberts surprised his wife with a yard full of novelty farm animal yard signs Friday morning.
“It just made sense to have farm animals. We’ve been farmers all our life,” he said.
The two met when they were parishioners at the old Baptist church on West Liberty Street in Medina. Clara was 17 and he was 19 when they married.
“It just seemed natural. That’s all I can say,” Roberts, now 95, said of his marriage to Clara, who is now 93.
He was friends with her brothers and their families knew each other.
Since then, the Roberts have lived through a Great Depression and a world war together, and they’ve watched as technology revolutionized just about everything.
They’ve raised four sons, who have had 10 children of their own. Those kids have gone on to have children and grandchildren.
Roberts said after 76 years, he doesn’t want to go a day without Clara. He said that up until a few months ago he was doing all the cooking and cleaning.
“I do all I can to care for her and keep her out of the rest home,” he said.
Roberts said civility is the secret to their successful marriage.
“We never had a knock-down, drag-out battle. We never had any arguments,” he said. “You have to do some sacrificing. You got to give and take.”
Plus, he said that kiss at bedtime definitely has helped.
“We never go to bed angry,” he said.
Contact Maria Kacik Kula at (330) 721-4049 or firstname.lastname@example.org.