Love at first sight — in the 1960s

Meet two couples married for over fifty years, and still going strong!


Golden Jubilee wedding

 Wedding Portrait

Love at first sight

For any young man, meeting one’s potential future in-laws can be an intimidating occasion. For Mr Rengasamy, it was something he decided he had to do, just days after he first made the acquaintance of Mdm Saraswathy.

Mr Rengasamy was at a friend’s gathering when he met Mdm Sarswathy, and was struck by love at first sight. Days later, Mr Rengasamy made a visit to Mdm Saraswathy’s parents with his brother and aunt in tow, with hopes to be their future son-in-law.

Back then, Mdm Saraswathy was living in Malaysia, and Mr Rengasamy in Singapore. However, the distance could not keep them from a budding romance – they would write letters and make phone calls from across the Causeway.

On 6th May 1966, they exchanged their wedding bands and started the next chapter of their lives together in Singapore.

Fast-forward 52 years, they’ve spent more than half of their lives together, and have shared many life lessons and much laughter.

 

Advice for couples

One piece of advice that Mr Rengasamy wants to share is that no matter how angry one may be, they have to learn to give in to their partner. He also shares that Mdm Saraswathy is very caring, very patient, and seldom gets angry.

Her caring heart shines as her husband’s main caregiver. Mr Rengasamy, who is wheelchair-bound following an operation, would attend his weekly physiotherapy sessions with Mdm Saraswathy by his side.

These days, the couple enjoy family time with each other, their two children, and two grandkids.

On quieter days, they think fondly of the happy memories they’ve created together: nothing can beat the life-changing moment when their daughter and son were born, but everything else comes close.

 

A date in the Botanic Gardens 

The thread that binds

 

Mr Loke and Mdm Wu first met when they were about 18 years old in 1961. They worked in the same tailor’s shop, and were platonic friends for a while. Mdm Wu even introduced her lady friend to him.

 

After working together for a period of time, the pair realised that they had grown fond of each other. Eventually, Mr Loke proposed and they tied the knot on 27 Dec 1964.

Mr Loke recalls that life was tough for them initially as a young, married couple. He remembers how the two of them felt lost then, fretting about housing issues and cashflow.

What helped them overcome the challenges through those turbulent years was the support they had for each other – for Mr Loke, Mdm Wu’s patience, kindness, and devotion to their children gave him peace of mind; for Mdm Wu, Mr Loke’s steadfast support of their household helped her raise their family.

 

Making the marriage work

Marriage isn’t a fairy tale, and the couple have had their fair share of disagreements over the years. When asked how they’ve worked together to sustain such a long-lasting marriage, Mr Loke shares his philosophy of self-reflection, of taking a step back to think through one’s actions instead of being judgemental.

Today, the couple, aged 74 and 75 years old, have 2 children and 4 grandchildren. In their retirement years, they enjoy the simple pleasures of everyday activities.

They’ve shared breakfasts and evening walks together for decades, and it never gets old.

   

 Mr Rengasamy and Mdm Saraswathy Mdm Wu and Mr Loke

 

Renewing their commitment

Mr Loke Yu Tong (75) and Mdm Wu So Har (74) have been married for over 53 years. Similarly, Mr Rengasamy Thangavelu (81) and Mdm Saraswathy D/O V Muthukumaru (71) have been married for over 52 years.

At this year’s inaugural Golden Jubilee Wedding Celebrations 2018, both couples renewed their commitment to each other, in front of their family members. They and other participants hoped that their own children could see the importance of strong families and marriages.

This year, ROM and ROMM are co-organising next year’s Golden Jubilee Wedding Celebrations, held on 13 April 2019.

If you, or an eligible couple you know, are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary or beyond in 2018, contact ROM at MSF_ROM@msf.gov.sg or ROMM at MCCY_ROMM@mccy.gov.sg to register.

Registrations close on 24 September 2018, so don’t wait!

 
More information at: www.msf.gov.sg/media-room/Pages/Golden-Jubilee-Wedding-Celebrations-2019.aspx


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