FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A Spencerville couple celebrates their 75th Valentine’s Day together on Sunday. It hasn’t always been perfect between Jetteree and Clarence Hull, but it is a love that has lasted.
What started as a day with friends, quickly turned into the beginning of a love story. Jetteree and her friend went to a pool in Georgia, where she simply wanted to soak in the sun and read her book since she wasn’t a good swimmer. While reading, she caught the attention of Clarence who was stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia at the time.
He came over to her and asked why she wouldn’t get in the pool and swim. She told him that she wasn’t a good swimmer. He offered, “he said let me teach you, I said no thank you. I didn’t want to stop reading,” she says.
Clarence was determined to pursue her and talked to Jetteree’s friend in order to get to know her more since she had no interest in talking to him at the time. The three ended up on a bus where Jetteree and Clarence sat together. Little did she know, her friend had given him all of her information to keep in contact with her. When it was time for Jetteree to get off the bus, Clarence had one question.
“Can I give you a kiss? I didn’t want to kiss a stranger,” she says.
“I thought she was the prettiest girl in the world. She wasn’t too easy to get acquainted with but I made it work. Took me quite a while,” Clarence says.
For two weeks, Clarence called Jetteree before traveling overseas with the military. It was then through letters they continued to get to know each other.
“He wanted a picture of me on our first date. I finally got out of him, I said, why did you want my picture? He said, because I’m wanting to marry you if it’s the Lord’s will. And every letter he wrote me while he was overseas, he would write sometimes six letters a week or more and they would all mention that,” she says.
Even though their initial meeting was short, Clarence knew she was the one.
“Something about her appealed to me very much,” he says.
Once Clarence got out of the military, it was no time before he left his hometown in Fort Wayne, Indiana to come and see Jetteree back in Georgia with a set of weddings rings in his pocket.
Two weeks later, after some convincing, they were married. January 26, 1946 was the start of their story together. Jetteree was 18 at the time. Since then they have had four children.
Jetteree says the secret is, “God’s way, it’s is the best way. That man [Clarence] was far better than I ever dreamed he would be, he’s kept his word, and he is faithful about everything. Not a day goes by that he doesn’t let me know that he loves me and he proves it in every way.”
Clarence will celebrate his 100th birthday in May. The couple still lives together in their Spencerville home.
For more on this story see The Star.