HURRICANE, W.Va. -- It was a warm summer night in 1946 when Calvin Harrison first noticed the 15-year-old West Dunbar girl.
As Freda Vance and her sisters danced the jitterbug at the fair in Institute, Calvin watched from a distance -- following each knee bend and arm wave she made.
Calvin, 18, had walked from Raymond City to the fair, but that wasn't the reason he was short of breath.
"We smirked at each other and that's all it took," Calvin Harrison, now 84, said earlier this week as he leaned back in a recliner in his living room.
"Yeah, she was a good dancer," he added, blushing.
As the band's horns faded, Calvin pushed his way through the crowd and grabbed the girl's hands.
"I didn't know what to think," Freda Harrison, now 81, recalled. "We walked the fairgrounds and he gave me a goodnight kiss."
The Hurricane couple will celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary next month.
"This is my old wedding ring. I saved the coupons off Borden's milk to buy it," Freda said, holding up her pinky finger. Calvin bought her a new one on their 40th wedding anniversary.
"I had to see if I was going to keep her," he joked.
Respect, friendship, loyalty and a genuine love for one another, they said, have kept them together for more than six decades.
Calvin called Freda the day after the fair and from then on the two were inseparable. He had never experienced the kind of love she gave him, he said.
His mother had left when he was 11 and his dad worked most all the time.
"I never really had a life until I met her," Calvin said.
Freda came from a large family. On an early spring day in 1948, her mother walked her to the preacher's house in Dunbar.
"She had 13 children, she probably liked to get rid of some," Freda said, laughing over her mother agreeing to let her get married at age 17.
The couple scooted close together on the couch Monday, each giving a knee for their wedding album to rest on. A corner tore as they pulled away the plastic cover that protects the aged wedding book the pastor gave them.