Blevinses celebrate 67 years of marriage |

Blevinses celebrate 67 years of marriage

Luke Graham

Vernon and Margaret Blevins’ relationship started more than 69 years ago because — of all things — a bet.

“(Vernon’s friend) bet him a six pack or a case that I wouldn’t go with him,” Margaret said.

More than six decades later, the Blevins celebrated their 67th wedding anniversary on July 4.

“I lost my independence on Independence Day,” Vernon joked.

Margaret and Vernon met in 1936 when Vernon and his dance band, which included Margaret’s uncle, were practicing for a show.

“I saw her and didn’t think much about it,” he said. “She was just talking to her friends.”

After Margaret’s uncle introduced them, the Blevins dated for 18 months before they decided to get married. They were married in a minister’s living room in Steamboat Springs.

They spent the first 15 years of their marriage in Craig and then moved to Bozeman, Mont. After 13 years in Bozeman, the Blevinses moved to Granby where they built and ran an A&W restaurant.

“It was all work at the A&W for the 13 years we were there,” she said.

After selling the A&W, the Blevinses moved back to Craig and have been here for the past 24 years.

Margaret said it hasn’t always been easy being married, but having a husband like Vernon made things easier.

“He’s just a gentle and calm guy,” she said. “He has never hurt anybody. He is always helping and doing things for people. Plus, if there was a problem he wouldn’t let me know it.”

She also said a key component in their marriage has been their sense of humor.

“He’s always telling me ‘I am going out to chase women,'” she said. “I tell him ‘I’ll call everyone and tell them to get their grandmothers off the street’ because they are the only ones who can’t outrun him.”

Though Vernon’s worked at several jobs, his first love was music. He played the saxophone in his band.

He credits Margaret’s work ethic and patience for keeping the marriage going.

“I never made much money,” he said. “She worked at the drugstore — that’s how we kept food on the table.

Margaret said Vernon was the true provider.

“Along with his music, he always worked two jobs,” she said. “So I just raised the kids.”

Because of Vernon’s love for music and people, he still makes tapes and plays them once a week for senior citizens at Sandrock Ridge Care & Rehab and Sunset Meadows.

“The greatest thing with me is when I play tapes,” he said. “If you hit a piece of music that means something, you’ll see (the residents) tap their foot or hand along with the beat.”

While the Blevinses have been married for 67 years, they are not certain they have uncovered the secret to a successful marriage. “(Long marriages) are kind of rare these days,” she said. “All of our kids have been divorced. I guess you have to be ready to give and take. It’s just too bad all couples can’t have it the same way.”

“You got to give and sure as hell listen,” Vernon added.

One bet and 67 years of marriage later, Margaret and Vernon both said their love is still as pure as when they met.

“I’ve loved him every minute,” she said.

So in the end, was the wager for a six-pack or a case of beer worth it?

“Yeah I guess so,” Vernon said. “As far as I know it has been.”

“If you don’t,” Margaret said, “who does?”

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