Pat and Alice Cahill celebrated another milestone in their lives this week when they clocked up 55 years of marriage at their Kirwans Bridge home.
The couple were born a day apart in 1936 and celebrated their 80th birthdays with a family party in 2016, and their 81st birthdays this January.
The couple has enjoyed a close relationship.
‘‘We have lived a very ordinary life and been proud of our children,’’ Alice said.
‘‘We never had high expectations way back in 1962 other than to get married, have a family and any extra was a bonus.’’
Pat’s parents used to bring their family to Nagambie for holidays — first at Buckley Park, then on Goldie Heath’s island in the river.
Pat had fond memories of those times and when he and Alice had their own family, they continued to visit the older Cahills who moved there in the 1970s with their own brood.
Alice was the youngest of five children born to Malachy and Veronica Carey who then lived in Warrnambool.
After her schooling, Alice became a teacher at St Margaret Mary’s school in Brunswick for a few years, then went to work at the Premier Printing Company in the city.
Pat was born in his family home in Port Melbourne to Norm and Cath Cahill and worked in the printing trade after his school years.
When he and Alice were 23, they met at the same printing place they were both working for in the late 1950s.
For a couple of years they got to know each other, courted, then married at St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Warrnambool on July 28, 1962.
They then moved to their home at Tallyho (now Syndal).
The couple was blessed with four children — Anne, Loretta, Joe and Clare — and have 14 grandchildren.
In 2002, they moved permanently to their home in Kirwans Bridge.
‘‘Pat and I felt very welcome when we arrived as we had been a part of St Malachy’s Catholic church congregation in Nagambie for all the years we holidayed here, and had a few friends by then,’’ Alice said.
‘‘Sometimes our place looks like a caravan park when all the family are visiting, but it is marvellous having them all visit.’’
Pat and Alice have enjoyed travelling overseas when they could and still like to share their experiences.
When asked what they felt kept them together all these years, Alice said patience, determination and following their marriage vows through good and bad times were key.
‘‘We have supported one another, even now in our older years,’’ she said.
— Diane Grant