Lifetime of love
Two young lovers who danced in Bluffton during the Great Depression are today Minnesota's longest wedded couple as recognized by Worldwide Marriage Encounter.
Tony Ament was originally from Bluffton and moved to St. Cloud in 1933. Rose Ament, then Rose Uselmann, lived with her parents on a Wadena farm before getting married.
The economy was rocky, and it was hard to make a living.
"It was rough, really. We dated for three years because we didn't have money to get married on," Rose Ament said.
They kept saving, and in April 1937, they exchanged vows at St. Ann's Church in Wadena.
The long wait and hard work paid off. The couple made their home, started a family and did a lot of traveling. For 25 years, they wintered in Arizona.
"We truly enjoyed that. We've gone to other places too," Rose Ament said.
Afterward, they settled down with assisted living in St. Cloud.
"It's really nice," she said.
Right now, the Aments have been married for nearly 74 years. Rose is 97, and Tony is 99.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter, a faith-based marriage enrichment program, announced the longest married couples in each of the 50 states in a Feb. 7 press release.
According to The St. Cloud Times, their daughter-in-law Karen Ament nominated them for the honor. On Saturday, Feb. 12, they were recognized in a ceremony at the Talahi Care Center with congratulations from St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis and Bishop John Kinney of the Diocese of St. Cloud.
According to the blog roseandtonyament.com, at the end of the ceremony, the nearly 100-year-old husband recognized the stencils on the folding chairs that he had cut several decades ago. He bought the folding chairs when he built and owned St. Cloud Nursing Home in the early 1960s.
How does a couple stay together so long?
"I don't want to give out any secrets," Tony Ament joked. He added: "We're just ordinary people. We just live together one day to another."
"Take one day at a time," Rose Ament said.
The wedding announcement from the April 15, 1937 Pioneer Journal
TAKE VOWS AT CHURCH
A pretty wedding occurred on Monday at St. Ann's church in Wadena when Miss Rose Uselmann, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Wilfred Uselmann, became the bride of Mr. Anthony J. Ament of St. Cloud. Rev. Francis Lenger read the impressive service.
The bride was lovely in a gown of white lace and satin. She carried yellow roses and ferns. Her sister, Miss Margaret Uselmann, the bridesmaid, wore pink chiffon and carried American Beauty roses and ferns.
Mr. Jacob Ament of St. Paul was best man.
A wedding dinner at high noon for immediate relatives followed the ceremony, at the bride's home. In the evening a large group of friends were guests at a reception in honor of the bridal couple at Burch's hall.
Out of town guests attending the wedding were Mr. and Mrs. Joe Wey and Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Feddena of St. Cloud.