Excerpted from “How I Met your Mother, etc.” by Harry Wistrand. Harry and his wife are both residents at Acadia Estates in Dallas, Texas. They’ve been married for 73 years and met at the University of Alabama.

Now back to college. My sophomore year, 1939 to 1940 was somewhat easier, but I was still learning to study. Then in the late fall of 1939 an event occurred which was to change my life forever. One Thursday in Mineralogy lab a girl appeared asking for samples for her roommate to study, for she was in the Tuesday lab and had missed her previous class because of illness. We engaged in pleasant small talk and in 10 minutes she had obtained the samples and departed. Occasionally we would pass on campus, smile at each other and say, “Hi.”

In early spring, attending a dance as a stag, I saw her jitterbugging with her partner. Being no jitterbug, I waited for a slow tune and then cut in. Her name I learned was Myrtle Faine Terry. Don’t call her Myrtle, call her Faine – or else. Our courtship began that evening and eventually ended in our marriage.

Faine was a library science student from Dothan, Alabama, and she soon gave me and even clearer perspective of what I wanted to do with my life. Had you known my grandmother, Louisa Buck Wistrand. You might find some parallel in our message here. Both Lou and Faine were diminutive, about 5 feet tall with a beautiful disposition, quick smile, and a great caring for people; especially their loved ones. I adored my grandmother.

From the time of our first date, about two weeks after we met at the dance, we went steady. At the end of the semester, we parted for the summer. With my first paycheck, I sent Faine a dozen roses. That did it. She wrote back saying not only thank you, but that she was also in love with me. Every day or so our letters crossed in the mail. We were both in love.