They last saw each other 65 years ago, but to Frederick Paul and Florence Harvey, it felt like no time had passed.
During their teens, Paul, 84, and Harvey, 81, courted. In 1955, Paul left their hometown of Wandsworth, Newfoundland, thinking he’d be gone for a short time. He found work in Toronto, though, and when he came back after more than a year, Paul learned that Harvey was now in St. John’s, enrolled in a teaching course.
If not for their brothers who live in the same retirement home, Paul and Harvey would have never reconnected decades later. Last February, Harvey was visiting her brother when he slipped her Paul’s phone number. She had been married for 57 years before her husband died three years earlier, and Paul had been married to his wife for 60 years until her death in 2019. Harvey knew Paul would be lonely, and gave him a call.
Soon, they were spending hours on the phone with each other nearly every day, reminiscing about their courtship. It turns out Paul lived 10 minutes away from Harvey’s son, and in June, she came for a visit. When she arrived, “I knew right away that she had taken my heart back again,” Paul told CBC News.
Harvey felt the same way, saying “there was still something there after all those years.” Within days, they were discussing marriage, and on Aug. 8, they wed in a small, family-only ceremony. “We told our kids, you know, we’re 81 and we’re 84, and we don’t have all that much time and we know what we want,” Paul said. Right before Harvey’s visit, Paul was diagnosed with stomach cancer, and he told CBC News he’s fighting hard because he has “the incentive of a love in my life.” Catherine Garcia