Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter
The former president and first lady have enjoyed 74 years of marriage, which makes them the longest-married presidential couple in U.S. history. The Carters first met in the early 1940s when President Carter was on break from the Naval Academy and asked Mrs. Carter on a date to the movies; her sister Ruth also attended.
“I just felt compatible with her,” the former president recalled in Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas’ book, What Makes a Marriage Last. “She was beautiful and innocent, and there was a resonance. We rode in the rumble seat of a Ford pickup — Ruth and her boyfriend in the front — and I kissed her on that first date. I remember that vividly.”
The next morning, President Carter told his mother that “Rosalynn was the one I wanted to marry.”
The pair wed on July 7, 1946, and share sons Jack, Jeff, Chip and daughter Amy.
Bonnie Bartlett & William Daniels
This June will mark 70 years of marriage for the two actors, who tied the knot on June 30, 1951.
“I think our relationship is based on mutual respect and I think she is smarter than me, better actor than me, and so I just hang on, you know, and try to get along,” Daniels told Forbes in a recent interview.
With a laugh, Bartlett chimed in, “He doesn’t mean that at all!”
Added Daniels: “I’m an actor! I’m making it up as I go along.”
The two share three sons: Robert, Michael and William Jr.
Kirk Douglas & Anne Buydens
The legendary actor, who died in February of last year at the age of 103, shared nearly 70 years of marriage with wife Anne. The two made it official in Las Vegas in 1956.
Their secret to almost seven decades of wedded bliss? “We solve our disagreements with a kiss,” Douglas told PEOPLE in 2015.
The couple had two sons together, Eric and Peter, who joined Douglas’ two sons from his previous marriage to actress Diana Love Dill, Joel and Michael.
Ron & Cheryl Howard
In 2019, the director opened up to PEOPLE about the instant connection he felt when he met Cheryl as a junior at John Burroughs High School in Burbank, California. “I met her, and there was never anybody else,” he said.
The high school sweethearts, who are parents to daughters Bryce Dallas, twins Jocelyn Carlyle and Paige and son Reed Cross, celebrated their 50th anniversary in November with thoughtful gifts.
“Nov 1 1970 Cheryl & I went on our 1st date. We went to see a re-release of Stanley Kramer’s It’s a Mad Mad Mad World and then got some pizza at now defunct Barnone’s in Toluca Lake. Quite a start, right?” Howard shared with his fans on Instagram.
“Today we are celebrating with these kind of socks we ordered (Cheryl’s w/my mug got held up) and a trip to our local take-out pizza place,” he added, sharing a photo of socks with Cheryl’s face on them. “We’ll be driving in the same ‘70 VW Bug I picked Cheryl up in 5 decades ago. It runs great. So do we.”
Alfred Hitchcock & Alma Reville
The celebrated film director died on April 30, 1980, and had his wife of 54 years at his bedside, along with their only child, daughter Patricia O’Connell, Variety reported at the time. The two got married in December 1926 and although Hitchcock, who died at age 80, is remembered as a cinematic pioneer, Reville had never fully gotten the recognition she deserved for being just as brilliant in her career as a screenwriter and editor and an indispensable partner to her husband and his movies. Their daughter went on to honor her mother, who died in 1982, and father in her 2004 book, The Woman Behind the Man.
Colin & Alma Powell
The former Secretary of State under President George W. Bush married the successful author and advocate for children and youth on Aug. 25, 1962. The distinguished pair have led decades-long careers in public service and have each won several awards for their work, including their shared 2019 Lincoln Medal. They are also parents to Linda, Annemarie and Michael.
Barbara & George H. W. Bush
Before Jimmy Carter, the late former president held the record for the longest presidential marriage, to wife Barbara before she died at 92 on April 17, 2018. The pair were just teenagers when they met, beginning an epic romance that would last more than 76 years.
“I have climbed perhaps the highest mountain in the world, but even that cannot hold a candle to being Barbara’s husband,” he said, according to the Associated Press.
Through triumphs and tragedies, a world war and four years in the White House, the former first couple’s love for each other endured as they raised five children: George W. Bush, also president of the United States, serving from 2001 until 2009, Jeb Bush, who was the 43rd governor of Florida, Neil, Marvin and daughter Dorothy — daughter Robin died after a battle with leukemia in 1953.
Bob & Ginny Newhart
The legendary comedian has been married to wife Ginny for 57 years, and credits laughter as the key factor to their long-lasting relationship.
“There’s something about laughter and the longevity of a marriage,” he said on CBS Sunday Morning.
Newhart revealed to PEOPLE in 2019 that Buddy Hackett introduced him to his wife, as the late comedian and actor set the two up on a blind date.
“Well, we’re both Catholic. She’s three-quarters Irish. I’m three-quarters Irish,” Newhart said. “Buddy said, ‘I’ve got a girl for you. She’s going with another guy, but I don’t think he’s right for her, so I’m going to fix you up on a blind date. You’ll meet her and you’ll date and you’ll get married. Then you’ll have kids and you’ll call one of the kids Buddy.’ “
“Which we did — one of our daughters, we called her Buddy,” Newhart joked.
Newhart and Ginny, who wed in 1963, have four children: sons Robert and Timothy, and daughters Jennifer and Courtney — as well as 10 grandchildren.
Queen Elizabeth & Prince Philip
The royal couple just celebrated 73 years of marriage last November. The pair were together at Windsor Castle, where they were staying amid England’s second national lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Although they didn’t have a big gathering for the occasion, the royal family made sure to send their best wishes. In addition to social media posts celebrating the anniversary, Prince William and Kate Middleton’s three children — Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis — delighted their great-grandparents with a handmade card.
Jerry Stiller & Anne Meara
The actors were married for 61 years until Meara died in 2015 at the age of 85. (Stiller died five years later in May 2020 at 92.) The two worked together as the comedy duo Stiller & Meara on sketch shows throughout the 1960s, most notably, The Ed Sullivan Show. Eventually, the two parted ways as collaborators but remained intact as a couple, which made their bond even stronger.
“I miss her,” Stiller said in a 2020 interview with Country Living. “There were no walls between us in any way. We both knew what the other was thinking even when we weren’t listening.”
The pair were parents to son Ben and daughter Amy.
Geoffrey Holder & Carmen de Lavallade
The larger-than-life dancer, actor, choreographer, painter and composer met his wife while performing as a dancer in House of Flowers, his Broadway debut in 1954. de Lavallade, also an actor, dancer and choreographer, was dancing in the same show and caught his attention. The couple got married in 1955 and had a son named Léo in 1957. The two distinguished artists were married for 59 years until Holder died in 2014 at the age of 84.
Cyd Charisse & Tony Martin
The movie dancer, who twirled with such studio legends as Gene Kelly (in Singin’ in the Rain) and Fred Astaire (in The Band Wagon), was married to singer-actor Martin for 60 years before she died in 2008 after suffering a heart attack at 86. (Martin died in 2012 at the age of 98.)
The Martins shared son, Tony Jr., and Charisse’s son Nico Jr. from her first marriage to dancer Nico Charisse.
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