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Special Valentines

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You’re never too old for love

Fiance - Chester Alsip
by – Carol Gadd, Verona

The someone special in my life is my fiancé Chester Alsip. I’ve known him and his family of eight brothers and sisters, etc. for 60 years. He is the sweetest, most understanding, patient, friendly man I’ve ever known.

He always has a kind word for everyone and a sweet smile on his face. He is 80-years-old and we fell in love with each other. I’m 74-years-old.

Along the road of life, we’ve both had a lot of heartache. He married his first wife a couple of years after he got out of the Army (Korean War). They wanted a family and couldn’t have children of their own, so in their 20’s, they adopted a little girl 4-months-old and named her Pam. I have a Pam the same age and they went to school together at Simon Kenton High School and were in the same grade.

Two years later they adopted a little boy, 2-months-old and named him Richard. I had another girl, Tracy. They went to school together and were in the same grade too.

A few years later, Chester’s young wife got lung cancer and died.

He was left with two young children to raise by himself.

Later on, he fell in love with a nice lady he went to church with who also lost her husband. They married, raised the children and stayed together until she died in 2005.

They were in the hospital as the same time. He had fallen and broke his hip. Chester was his wife’s total caregiver for almost five years, 24-7, even when she had to have her leg removed above the knee.  He had to lift her in and out of the wheelchair into the van, etc. He got very little sleep as she was up and down all night and day. They lived in Florida and didn’t have any family close by to help him.
He was still nice and friendly and had a smile on his face every time I’d see him at his family reunions. He really is a very special man.

His sister, Laurie has been one of my best friends since we were in the ninth grade at school, 60 years ago.

I was married to my childhood sweetheart for 45 years. In 2000 he died from cancer. I grieved for him for years and the thought of ever loving someone else never “crossed my mind,” but I fell in love with Chester and he with me.

I was 69 years old and he was 74 years old.

After my husband died in 2000, I had colon cancer and surgery in 2001. Then in 2002 my only son, Jeff, fell dead, at the dinner table with a massive heart attack at 45-years-old.

Yes, we had our share of love and heartaches and now in the later years of life, we have love again.