Allan Bagg’s mom worked with a young lady named Ellenor at a Bell Telephone office in Maple.

Allan had met her a couple of times and says with a cheeky grin, “and I thought, oh boy, because she was a looker then.” He didn’t think he stood a chance.

Allan’s mom invited the 17-year-old home for dinner one night. After eating, Allan, who was 21, and Ellenor were left alone on the verandah, chatting. When it came time for Ellenor to be driven home, Allan said “we stood up, and I don’t know what happened. We just kissed each other. That was it.” On the way home, he asked her out on a date that Saturday night and she said yes.

It was 1955, and they dressed up to visit Casa Loma. There was a big band playing, and dancing. After a short courtship, Allan said he knew he wanted to get married. He went to Ellenor’s mom and dad and asked for her hand. They said yes.

They married June 9, 1956 and have not looked back, celebrating 68 years in 2024.

“Allan’s been my only sweetheart,” Ellenor says.

The two lived in southern Ontario for years. They settled in Eagle Lake and are now at the Gardens of Haliburton. People would know them from the Eagle Lake Country Market.

The two waited four years to start a family, as they were renovating their home and enjoying summer at the lake.

“To me the secret of a good marriage is to honour your wedding, don’t be doing anything you shouldn’t do,” says Allan. “Be true to your partner and do things together.”

He adds, “everywhere we could, we went together. We always went to church together and any dances or anything like that. I was not the kind of man who went out with the boys and things like that. It wasn’t my thing.”

He says as a result “they have never had a hard word together, disagreements, but no hard words.”

For her part, Ellenor says it seems like her mother-in-law chose her for Allan. The couple think she was a matchmaker. Both families befriended each other. Despite the distance from Maple to Woodbridge, they made it work. Allan had a car and would go for Sunday dinners to Maple.

Ellenor believes “joining things together, going to church together, families getting along well together” contributed to their success. “I think the backbone of a marriage is being able to go to church together and feel comfortable. Have faith.”

The two were also active in the community. Allan added she was, and is, a good mother.

When Allan was in hospital in the New Year after a fall, and needed surgery, Ellenor said she missed snuggling with him. It was weird sleeping alone. She hadn’t done it since 1956.

“We’ve had a good marriage,” Allan says. “We couldn’t have asked for anything better in our marriage. And I love her today as much as I did when I got that first kiss.”