At 70, Mumford High School friends Stuart Lester and Marilyn Siskin-Meyer tie the knot.
When Stuart Lester and Marilyn Siskind-Meyer double dated at Mumford High School’s senior prom in 1965, they never expected they would be married to each other more than 50 years later.
Stuart and Marilyn were good friends in high school, but parted ways after graduation. She attended the University of Michigan and eventually relocated to Seattle, while he attended Wayne State Law School before moving to San Diego.
For 50 years, they led separate lives, each with their own marriage and, subsequently, divorce. In 2014, a Facebook group was created in advance of their 50th class reunion with all the members of the 1965 graduating class, so Marilyn and Stuart were able to reconnect.
“I noticed that Stuart’s pictures on Facebook always included his son, but never had a woman in them,” Marilyn said with a laugh.
While neither of them attended the 50th reunion in 2015, the pair continued to communicate over Facebook and text message until that Thanksgiving when they were both headed to Los Angeles to see family.
“We met up in LA,” Stuart said. “At first, she really had no interest, but I kept visiting.”
Stuart made four trips to Seattle before Marilyn realized there was something special between them.
“I realized that at age 68, here was a potential life partner who met all of my criteria plus some,” Marilyn wrote in a short memoir detailing the couple’s story.
In October 2016, Marilyn and Stuart began dating. Stuart, a retired lawyer, dropped everything and immediately moved his life to Seattle. To everyone who has asked why he would leave sunny San Diego for the gray, rainy weather of Seattle, Stuart simply replies, “To be with Marilyn.”
Earlier this year, the couple received an invitation to another high school reunion and decided it would be a great idea to officially become married in front of all their Mumford high school friends. Rabbi Emeritus Daniel Syme of Temple Beth El officiated.
“Our friends thought it was wonderful,” Marilyn said. The pair couldn’t agree more.
“We have very different interests, but that doesn’t really matter because our souls match,” Marilyn said.
Despite their varied interests, or perhaps because of them, Stuart and Marilyn have been the perfect complement to each other’s lives.
“Stuart says he thinks I’m more mellow now. I think it’s just knowing that it’s OK to be imperfect and that I will always have his unconditional love,” Marilyn said.
Stuart has become Marilyn’s chief barbeque expert, handyman, gardener, Sudoku coach, best friend and now husband, she writes in her short memoir. Between the two of them, they have two sons and three daughters, as well as one grandchild, whom they both love and adore.
Not only does their story bring joy to them and their families, but others who hear it can’t help but fall in love with the couple as well. At Trader Joe’s, the only place in Seattle Marilyn has found kosher meat, she told the story to the cashier who excused himself and brought her back a bouquet of flowers.
“People love to hear our story,” Marilyn said. “Even at 70 you can find a very sweet romance.”
Read more: Jewish Lovebirds Meet Through JFS and JARC