A couple of weeks ago I received a phone call from a woman needing a notary. She was from California but was in Arkansas with her fiancé and they needed some document notarized ASAP. I told her I could be there in an hour and a half. “Oh, no, I’m not ready for you now. I don’t even have the paperwork”. I told her to call me when she had the paperwork and was ready to sign. A week and a half later and she calls me, “This is Mary, I’ve got the papers and I am ready to sign them now”. Maybe I am supposed to remember everyone, but my brain just doesn’t believe that. I did not have a clue who she was. She reminded me that she was the one from California who was with her fiancé in Arkansas and needed something notarized. Oh, yes, that did ring a bell. She then wanted to schedule me to come out to their house the following week. I guess, ASAP does not mean the same thing to everyone!
The day to see “Mary” was finally here. I approached the front door of the address she gave me and a much older man walking with a cane answered the door. I asked if this was Mary’s house. He looked at me a bit strange and said, “Yes, it is Johnny and Mary’s house”. Just then, “Mary” pokes around the corner and I realize my mistake. I assumed that ASAP meant it was an emergency and needed to be done as soon as possible. I also assumed that I was speaking to a young woman on the phone talking about her fiancé – a young man. WRONG! This was a very delightful older couple.
Mary proceeded to tell me their story…….
Johnny and Mary had been college sweethearts 50 years ago! His parents really liked Mary and wanted their son to marry her. He was only in his 20’s and didn’t want to get married just then. Mary went on to marry someone else. Mary and Johnny’s parents maintained their friendship with yearly Christmas cards and such. His parents never spoke of Johnny and she never inquired about him. Mary had a 40 year marriage that ended in October 2011, with the sudden death of her husband. At Christmas that year, Mary sent her usual card to Johnny’s parents letting them know that her husband had passed away unexpectedly a few months earlier. Mary never received a card from Johnny’s parents that year.
Johnny’s mother had not been in good health for a long time and she passed away earlier that year. His father was left broken-hearted and died a short 5 weeks later. Johnny had lived his whole life in California. His parents decided to ‘retire’ to Arkansas about 20 years prior. Johnny, an only child, came to Arkansas to help his dad after his mom had passed. Luckily he was still here when his father slipped away also. He had stayed on in their house in Arkansas to try and get things settled. In December of 2011 Mary’s Christmas card arrived at the house in Arkansas. Johnny then realized that Mary had lost her spouse. It took a few months, but Johnny finally called Mary to let her know that his folks had both passed away and that is why she had not received a Christmas card from them that year. He also gave his condolences to her in regards to loosing her husband. They chatted briefly and said goodbye. Neither of them could stop thinking about the other. Johnny called her back and they picked up right where they had left off. Johnny had a number of relationships over the years but never married anyone. He asked Mary over the phone to marry him. She said YES! He knew both of his parents would be pleased with this information.
Mary flew to Arkansas on a Saturday to help him get his parents house in order and ready to sell before they went back to California to get married three months later in October of 2012. On Monday of that next week, Mary found herself sitting in the waiting room of the hospital. Johnny had passed out and was rushed to the hospital. He had to have emergency by-pass surgery!
I met them a week later when he was recovering at his parents house and Mary was working like crazy to clean out the house. Mary told me that after the first conversation with him on the phone she went and dug out the box from the attic that had all of the love letters that Johnny had ever written her and she read them one by one. She told me he was just as sweet now as he was back then.
It was REALLY nice to hear such a nice story with what will hopefully be a happy ending for them.