Shared beliefs credited for 72-year marriage
The Spartanburg Herald-Journal reports about the seven-decade marriage of a husband and wife who attend the Duncan Church of Christ in South Carolina:
Friends describe J.W. and Mattie Belle DeYoung as faithful, strong-willed, committed, with a soft-spoken kindness and a heart for helping others.
During their 72-year marriage, others have looked to them as an example of how to live and how to stay together.
“They do kind things in the background; they don’t do it for show,” said a close, personal friend. She didn’t want to be named, saying the focus should be on the couple and not her. “It’s so inspiring to see the quiet work they do for others.”
In the 1930s, when they were teenagers, J.W DeYoung would greet Mattie Belle in the hallway of the school in Reidville with the words: “Hey sweetheart.”
After school, the two would walk miles away — barefoot, wearing patched clothing — to a little country store to buy Cokes.
Without much money or a car, Mattie Belle, who is now 91, says this regular outing was like a date.
A few years later, on July 17, 1940, the high school sweethearts wed.
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