At 16 and 18 years old, Arthur & Ruby Lawrence wed in Wake Forest, NC.
Four years later, they migrated up north to Rhode Island, and in 1945 they settled into the home where they would go on to raise nine children together, start a church, and where they still currently reside in wedded bliss 73 years after saying “I Do.” In 2010, Barack and Michelle Obama wrote a letter to the couple congratulating them on their 70th wedding anniversary.
Q: What are some tips you would give on preparing yourself as an individual for marriage?
Arthur: Observe other marriages to learn what to do or not to do. You on your own once your married.
Ruby: Make sure you are friends first that’s the only way the marriage can last. Have only one boyfriend/girlfriend.
Q: How did you know he/she was the one?
Arthur: Jokingly states, I don’t know it was just something I wanted to do. She was just the first one. Seriously it just felt right at the time and was something good.
Ruby: Well the reason I made this decision was because I had made a mistake, I was pregnant before I got married and I felt I could just go on with it. I had no choice (she laughed). I knew he was the one because he was my type. He was just for me!
Q: How important is friendship to your relationship?
Ruby: Friendship is the foundation of our relationship. We went to school together for years.
Q: What is the #1 reason you believe your marriage has survived for 73 years?
Ruby: Mainly because of forgiveness. I had nine children and I lost one but I tried to stick around to survive for my family no matter what happened.
Q: What advice would you give to newly married couples?
Ruby: I really don’t know what to give these kind of people (she says jokingly) because some of them don’t really understand how a marriage is suppose to be. How it’s suppose to be. You’re supposed to love one another and do the best you can no matter what happens you’re suppose to keep your love for your husband or wife. I don’t care what they’ve done or do you have to always forgive them. You don’t forget but you have to forgive. You never forget nothing I don’t care what it is. You will always think about it forever but you have to forgive or you want be forgiven.
Q: Why do think so many divorces are happening now?
Ruby: I don’t go for that I don’t like divorce. If you’ve married someone you’ve made a vow and you should stick with it. I don’t care how rough it is you have to hang on in there. I don’t believe in divorces, married again and all that stuff. One man for me that’s enough! Divorce has never crossed my mind.