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article imageCouple married for 83 years a Guinness World Record

By Chris V. Thangham     Mar 17, 2008 in Entertainment
Clarence Vail married Mayme in 1925 and their marriage is still going strong. They're also going into the Guinness World Records as the longest married couple in the world. They said one of the secrets of a successful marriage is to take vows seriously.
The couple from Hugo, Minnesota got married in 1925 when Clarence Vail was 18-years-old and Mayme was 16. They met in eighth grade.
After being married now for 83 years, the couple have been officially entered into the Guinness World Records for being married longer than any other living couple in the world, according to NBC's Today show.
The couple doesn’t have a magic formula for the success of their marriage, but they said they took their vows seriously. Mayme told NBC’s Kevin Tibbles:
You take your vows, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer…I guess you just stick to it, come what may.”
She also said they haven’t had an argument since 1946, which might be another World record. She said her husband, who is 101, is not prone to arguing. The 99-year-old joked:
“That’s why we got along so well…He never spoke out of turn. I didn’t give him a chance.”
The Vails survived the Great Depression and World War II. They had six children. In 1948, they had a minor crisis when husband Clarence was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Mayme prayed quite a bit, and promised to attend mass every day for the rest of her life if her husband survived. She attended mass after that for 60 years without an interruption until she had to move to a retirement home. She said she still says the rosary regularly.
The couple also didn’t smoke or drink during their long marriage and consider it a waste of money.
As MSNBC reports: Their faith told them to stay faithful through thick and thin, and they did that. It also told them to be fruitful and multiply, and they did that, too. Their six children — three have been married for 50 years or longer — begat 39 grandchildren, who begat 101 great-grandchildren, who have so far begotten 40 great-great-grandchildren. Total 186 descendants.
One of those great-great-grandchildren, David, has been married for two years to Christine. He was asked if he was shooting to beat their record. He said, “two down, 81 to go."
Clarence is unable to do many things at the moment but Mayme is taking care of her husband, just like she promised 83 years ago at the marriage altar.
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