Chambers Flat residents Barbara and Hale Anderson will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary on October 20, after “years full of love”.
The Andersons met at the Regatta Hotel, Brisbane in 1952, as Hale’s father had just taken over the establishment and was looking for a cook and waitress, who just happened to be Barbara and her mother.
“On my first day I asked him how he was and he answered ‘on four wheels; you?’” Mrs Anderson said.
Mr Anderson has been bound to a wheelchair for 71 years after contracting polio in 1945 and Mrs Anderson has been his main carer since their marriage.
“This woman has given up everything for me, she lives for me and I think she’s the best woman in Australia,” Mr Anderson said.
They were married on October 20,1956 in a small ceremony at the Vulture Street Church and they opened their first shop the day after.
The pair owned party shops in East Brisbane for 52 years, retiring within the past two years.
Five years after the wedding, they celebrated their honeymoon at the Bathurst car races, where they only had “a cake tin and some multi-grips to cook with”.
Every year they watch the race without fail.
Their children, Karen, Bradley and Craig, were all high achievers in their endeavours and motorbike racing was where the family spent their weekends.
“It’s been bikes and cars, and we’ve always been together,” Mrs Anderson said.
Their once in a lifetime trip was to America, on a journey they had won through work. Due to Mr Anderson’s wheelchair, friend Kev Harris joined them.
“Kev wouldn’t let Hale miss out on that trip,” Mrs Anderson said.
That was their first time on a plane and on escalators and they got to meet Mickey Mouse at Disneyland, where Mrs Anderson “lugged around mag wheels for the chair and a cowboy hat so he could be like John Wayne”.
The Andersons said there were no secrets to a long lasting marriage.
“We just love each other. We’ve given each other grey hair and wrinkles but we’ve certainly done alright for ourselves,” Mrs Anderson said.
“He’s certainly not going to trade me now.”
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.