"It was just another adventure at first," she said. "I didn't think right away of marriage or anything but that's what developed then out of it."

During her five-day visit to America, Manfred proposed. Rosemarie, though, said she needed time to think about it. She came back a year later and the two were married on July 26, 1958 in a church in Pittsburgh

Because the ceremony was so far away, neither Rosemarie's nor Manfred's family attended the wedding. It was a small ceremony with one witness, one photographer and one of Manfred's closest friends as the best man.

"They were all the people we had," Manfred said.


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Rosemarie chose a business suit over a fancy gown and the two had a simple lunch with their friends after the ceremony.

Sophie Tucker, then a well-known actress and comedian, happened to be nearby and decided to join their party.

"They were taking pictures of us and she sat at the other table," Rosemarie said. "And she said 'Come here, child.' (to me) and she put her arm around me and they took pictures."

The couple honeymooned in Niagara Falls with only $50, then began their lives together in Pittsburgh.

"We were on our own. Nobody told us what to do. And that was really good," Rosemarie said.

When his job with Westinghouse Electric Company brought him to the BWI Westinghouse plant 30 years ago, the couple moved to Catonsville. They have living there ever since.

Active members at the Catonsville Senior Center, they enjoy spending time at the North Rolling Road facility and corresponding with their daughters, both of whom live out of state. Heidi lives in Arlington, Va. and Monika lives in Clinton, N.J. Each has two daughters as well.

After nearly 55 years as a couple, they have no special plans for Valentine's Day.

But the couple will spend the day together.

"It will be just us two at home," she said.

"I might get a box of candy. She likes candy," he said. "I'm sure I'm going to get a card. I always do."