Bill and Carol Miller met in July 1960 on a blind date, got engaged within two weeks and were married six months later.
The Glen Oaks couple is still going strong after 50 years of marriage and were one of nine couples honored by City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) for having been married for a half century or longer during an event at the SNAP Senior Center in Queens Village.
“He had to put up with me for 50 years, so I have to give him a medal for that,” Carol Miller said of her husband. “We respect each other, we have our good days and our bad but we stick with each other.”
The Millers met on a blind date and went to Rockaway Beach the next day.
“The best part is we got engaged in two weeks,” Carol Miller said. “It’s true love.”
She said Bill proposed to her at the bus stop by 179th Street and Hillside Avenue in Queens Village two weeks after they met because he was set to join the U.S. Navy and be away for three years.
“He comes to meet me after work and he’s got this ring and I’m like, ‘You’re not going to do that right here. Put that thing away.’ It was like an embarrassment,” Carol said. “It was different.”
She said couples have to roll with the punches if they want to have a long marriage.
“You have to work in a marriage,” Carol said. “You’re going to have your fights, your dislikes and it was an adjustment. You just have to work it out. Now people work it out — with a lawyer.”
The couple were married in January 1961 and were what Weprin called “real heroes” for staying in a marriage for 50 years.
The councilman gave the couple and eight others Council certificates at the event he has conducted at SNAP for a number of years.
“This is a great tradition because it’s a chance to honor the real heros of this country,” the councilman said.
Weprin, who said he has been married for 16 years and brought his 3-year-old daughter, Ellie, to the event as a favor to his wife, said “some people treat marriage too frivolously.”
He said the secret to a lasting marriage is to “respect each other and do whatever your wife says.”
“I have found that is the best way to keep a marriage strong,” Weprin said.
Also celebrated were Norma and Hy Sherman of Bell Park Manor Terrace in Queens Village, who have been married 62 years.
The couple lived a block away in the South Bronx when they met and were engaged about nine months later.
“It was love at first sight, of course,” Hy said.
Norma said laughter has kept their 62-year marriage strong.
“We’re compatible and we like to have a good time and be well and laugh a lot,” she said.
Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz
©2011 Community News Group
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