TAMPA, Fla. — Joe and Elsie Archer married on Aug. 7, 1950.
And no one who knows the couple was surprised that Joe Archer surprised his beloved on their recent 70th anniversary with a small party and their first sit-down meal together since the novel coronavirus pandemic began.
Elsie Archer, 89, who suffers from suspected dementia, has lived at the Discovery Village at Westchase, for nearly one year. Although Joe Archer has been able to visit daily because she receives hospice care, COVID-19 restrictions have limited the length of their visits and any other family members from seeing her as well, WBIR reported.
“You don’t know what she understands. Whatever she picks up, fine. If not, who cares? As long as we’re together,” Joe Archer, 92, told the TV station.
Three of the couple’s six children were able to attend the party, and their twin daughters said their parents’ love was destined to last from day one.
“They met roller skating up in northern Pennsylvania, and dad fell in love with mom because of her smile,” Linda Miller told WFTS.
“Mom is very happy to have all of us here. Dad is overjoyed. He woke up this morning early and was ready to go and was just excited to celebrate his anniversary with mom,” Miller added.
And Joe’s daily visits with Elsie have not gone unnoticed.
“His devotion to her every day, seven days a week, every day of the year. He comes in and spends five or six hours with her,” daughter Cinda Snow told WFTS.