Sturgeon County – A family photo album sits on the kitchen table of Harvey and Christine Vranas’ home. In it are photographs taken at Christmas each year since the couple were wed in 1953. It is a walk through six decades of marriage and love, one that has resulted in an ever widening collection of people in the annual family photo.
The couple, longtime volunteers with the Morinville Rendez-Vous Centre, were wed in Morinville at St. Jean Baptiste Church on Oct. 21, 1953. They recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with family at a small gathering.
Mrs. Vranas said she and her husband grew up close to each other in Sturgeon County, just outside Morinville. “The first meeting was not to go out,” she recalled. “I had two brothers his age. He came over on the bicycle, pretending to see my brothers. We went to the same church and our parents knew each other.”
Mr. Vranas said his wife’s father coached a team that he played on. He was attracted to his future wife because she was a few years older than he was. “The young ones were young and silly,” Mr. Vranas recalls. “You could take them out once. Go to a show once. That’s OK. She just looked a little bit more stable.”
Mr. Vranas was 22 when he wed his wife. Sixty years later, the couple share their life with son Wayne and daughters Wendy and Karen, as well as two grandchildren and one great-grand child.
The secret to their successful marriage has been a simple one. Though Mr. Vranas jokes the secret has been all work and no play, Mrs. Vranas cuts to the real reason. “I work by the thing never go to bed with an argument on, which we never even did argue,” she said, adding she’s never henpecked her husband. “We’ve had a really good wedding.” Despite his quick-witted comments, Mr. Vranas agrees. “Don’t make a big issue of a small thing,” he said. “I see lots out there they have scraps over some little thing. Let it go in one ear and out the other.”