Wausau couple gives advice after 77 years of marriage

Published: Aug. 23, 2017 at 4:56 AM CDT
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A central Wisconsin couple celebrated 77 years of marriage Tuesday. Laughter filled 2510 restaurant in Wausau as the two reminisced about the past.

Marge and Wally Engel met in Butternut in the 1930s, quite literally falling in love on a ski hill in 1938.

"I fell for Wally, and I did, really," said Marge. "I was on my skis and I was going to make it down the hill, and I saw him standing at the bottom and he had his hand stretched out straight... he clocked me, and I fell in the snowbank at his feet so from then on he had to take care of me."

In 1940 the two got married. Three children and a handful of grandchildren later, their advice sounds simple.

"You have differences, but you make the best of it, and you learn to put a zipper on your mouth sometimes," said Marge. "You can't be right all the time."

Wally said sharing and learning to compromise are imperative.

"A commitment, communication," said Marge. "Marriage isn't just a bed of roses."

The two now live together at the Primrose Retirement Community in Wausau.

"Sometimes we sit there, just sit in our rocking chairs, one falls asleep then the other one takes their turn falling asleep, but we have our laughs," said Marge. "Can't give up on those things, gotta keep the comedy going, kid one another."

And as if 77 years of marriage isn't impressive enough, Wally will turn 102-years-old in September. Marge is 95.

"God blessed us with a good life, good health," said Marge.

Marge said a good diet, and the good Northwoods air has helped them live so long.