As those of you who regularly read my articles are probably aware, I often use a headline that fails to reveal much about the subject and the title of this article is no exception. To save everyone the trouble of doing the necessary calculations, 3,380 weeks converts to sixty-five years and that relates to how long Bellara couple Margaret and Wally Westwood have been happily married and I had the opportunity to catch up with them as they celebrated the milestone with members of their family recently. Having met at a dance hall in the Sydney suburb of Bankstown, Margaret and Wally had to wait three years before they were able to tie the knot.
Featured Image(above): Celebrating their anniversary with family
‘My father refused to allow me to marry before I was twenty-one,’ Margaret told me. ‘As it turned out, we ended up getting married ten days before my twenty-first birthday and because Wally is younger than me. We both had to get signed permission from our parents. When I met Wally, he told me that he was a year older than he was,’ she explained. The couple were married on October 10th in 1953 at Campsie in NSW and Wally worked as a clothing industry sales representative, eventually advancing to a position which placed him in charge of the women’s clothing division of Bonds.
Upon retirement, Margaret and Wally moved to the Sunshine State, taking up residence in an apartment on their daughter Mandy’s property at Burpengary. Bitten by the travel bug, they spent much of their time caravanning, using the Burpengary premises as their base. ‘Our caravanning came to an end when I suffered a stroke,’ said Wally. ‘We had just returned home from the North to spend Christmas with the family and I was struck down two days before Christmas Day,’ he added.
Three years ago, the Westwoods became members of our community when they made the decision to move from Burpengary to the Seasons Retirement Village in Bellara and it was there that they celebrated their sixty-fifth anniversary along with family members and Seasons staff. Whilst only a few of their family were able to attend on the day the couple have three children, fifteen grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. ‘That number is still growing,’ said Wally.
They’re still working on it,’ he pointed out. In modern times when it is all too common to hear about couples divorcing after only a few years, it is refreshing to know that for people like Margaret and Wally Westwood, the words “’till death do us part” really mean something. The team at The Mini Bribie Islander and in fact, the community at large wish to congratulate Margaret and Wally on their wonderful commitment to each other.