Woman Wears Her Original Wedding Dress While Celebrating 70th Anniversary with Husband

Lovebirds Nancy Lubbers, 87, and Melvin Lubbers, 91, met at a skating rink and wed in 1952

Couple celebrates 70th Anniversary
Nancy and Melvin Lubbers. Photo: @anna.behning/CATERS

A pair of teenage sweethearts rang in their 70th year of marriage by staging a swoon-worthy photoshoot featuring the bride in her original wedding dress.

Nancy Lubbers, 87, and her 91-year-old husband Melvin met at a skating rink when Nancy was just 16, according to Caters News Agency. Seven decades later, the couple has five children, 12 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren — and nearly a lifetime of memories under their belts.

The South Dakota natives decided the best way to celebrate their 70th anniversary was with a special photoshoot in the family garden, captured by their youngest granddaughter, Anna, who works as a professional wedding photographer.

"My grandparents only have a couple of photos from their wedding day," Anna said, per Caters. "I came up with the idea to take photos of Grandma in her dress and then my mom, Melissa, found Grandpa's Korean War Army suit for him to wear."

Couple celebrates 70th Anniversary
Nancy and Melvin Lubbers. @anna.behning/CATERS

The memorable ensembles were on display at the love birds' church wedding in 1952, following Melvin's proposal at a ballpark.

Nancy originally purchased her dress for about $35 and her veil for $15, according to Caters.

Asked how she felt to wear her gown again, Nancy said, "It really was an honor that I could still get in it."

Couple celebrates 70th Anniversary
Melvin Lubbers. @anna.behning/CATERS

"My dress was something special and I loved it, so I just preserved it and kept it all these years," she added. "It felt really good to wear it again and we had fun reminiscing about our wedding day and the photo shoot was a lot of fun."

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

"Oh boy, that certainly brought back some good memories," Melvin said of seeing his wife in the gown again.

Caters reported that Melvin likes to joke he bought Nancy's rings from a gumball machine, but the young couple was actually able to pay for their own wedding and reception in the basement of the church, where they celebrated with ice cream and cake for dessert.

Couple celebrates 70th Anniversary
Nancy and Melvin Lubbers' wedding day on Jan. 6, 1952. @anna.behning/CATERS

Shortly after getting hitched, Melvin was called to serve in the Korean War as a tank commander for eight months, forcing him and Nancy to forgo a honeymoon, according to Caters.

The two went on to raise their children together while Nancy worked in a grocery store and Melvin worked as a salesman and maintained a hobby farm.

Couple celebrates 70th Anniversary
The Lubbers with their family. @anna.behning/CATERS

Along the way, they learned the secret for a long and happy marriage.

"You won't always agree, sometimes you have a disagreement, but when you have one of those you sit down and talk about it and come up with an answer — and once it's resolved, don't bring it back up," Melvin told Caters.

"Always respect each other even when you don't agree," Nancy added. "Just make the best of your life."

Related Articles