A DINAS POWYS couple are set to celebrate the incredible achievement of 75 years of wedded bliss.
Thomas and Phyllis Johanson, who renewed their vows at St Peter's Church in Dinas Powys five years ago, are set to celebrate their Golden Platinum wedding anniversary on Tuesday, July 1.
The St Ivor Place couple, who have two sons, three grand children and five great grand children together, tied the knot at Barry Methodist Church in 1939 when they were both 19.
They met at a friends party when they were 16 and their first date was a trip to the cinema.
“The reason why we got married so young was because there was a threat of war,” said 93-year-old Tom.
“My father said you are far too young to get married at 18, so we waited until we were both 19 and then got married.”
Just two months after they got married the war started and Tom volunteered with the Royal Marine Commandos, the only time they have been separated in their married life, where he served until the end of the conflict.
During his time with the Royal Marines he was deployed to India and Burma and became close friends with many of the Ghurkas in his unit.
“I’m still in contact with them and send a cheque for £100 every Christmas that goes towards their welfare,” he said.
After the war he worked at a number of quarries across south Wales for more than 33 years, as he went on to become a quarry manager at St Andrew’s before retiring.
He said that the secret to a happy marriage was never going to sleep without resolving an argument and treating each other as equals.
Phyllis, originally from Barry, added: “You can’t get through married life without discussions. There are things that you need to get off your chest. A lot of people when they have a row they give up, let it build up, and have a divorce.”
Tony, who was driving up until last year, said this year would be the first time they didn’t celebrate their wedding anniversary with a party, but they would be having a meal with close family.
The couple have already received two cards from the Queen congratulating them on reaching their 60th and 70th wedding anniversaries, and were hoping to receive another one in the post soon.