A Long Life of Love and Wonder
Anna and Joseph Wise, childhood sweethearts, were married for 57 years. They met when she was 8 and he was 11.
"I was madly in love with him and I thought surely that I would marry him when I was old enough," she says.
How did she persuade him?
"Well, I was sassy," she says. "I turned on all the tricks that I knew, and winked an eye or two now and then."
On their first date, Joseph Wise took Anna to a baseball game.
"I was perfectly willing to go there or anywhere else," she says.
On their dates, they "danced the night away," she says. "We went to speakeasies. We did all things you're not supposed to do."
In 1933, the couple "just sort of agreed it was time to get married," she says.
After nearly six decades of marriage, Joseph Wise lost a leg to diabetes, then died due to complications from the disease in 1991.
"We never know what diseases are going to catch up with us," Anna Wise says. "It's amazing the things that people can live through when they have to. So you get through it.
"And you get through almost anything and you live to be 96. And sometimes you wonder why. But then ... you look up at the blue sky and think it's going to be alright."
Produced for Morning Edition by Nadia Reiman. The senior producer for StoryCorps is Michael Garofalo.
Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.