By Yannason Duncan
It comes as no surprise to 98-year-old, John Adolphus, of Henrietta Village, that his marriage of almost 70 years to 93-year-old, Agatha Adolphus, has recorded a place in longevity.
In fact, Mr. Adolphus, prior to making that decision to tie the knot with his faithful companion, Agatha, was honouring a personal obligation.
The agile, elderly man, confidently reasoned that his marriage was one destined to last because, like he reckoned, he was not in a rush to walk down the aisle. Instead he capitalized on the opportunity of getting to fully know his prospective wife.
“Despite people having all kinds of things to say about me courting for five years before I got married, I wanted to know the girl in and out, before I get married.”
Kaieteur News caught up with Mr. Adolphus while he was tending to one of his cows. Being recognised as the oldest person in the Henrietta Community, Mr. Adolphus willing reflected on his younger years.
Born on July 24, 1912, at Queenstown Village, Essequibo Coast, the senior citizen who at present resides at Henrietta, also lived and worked as a main service man in Pomeroon. Working on a boat, Mr. Adolphus said that his job entailed transporting passengers, to Kabakubari and Moruca. Prior to working in Pomeroon, Mr.Adolphus, however, noted, that he also practised carpentry. He continued to work as a carpenter after he got married.
He decided to tie the knot at age 25 after five years of courting.
Mr. Adolphus recalled the first time he met his wife, Agatha. The occasion, he vividly recalled, was the Hindu celebration, referred to in those days as the ‘Taja.’
“I followed the procession from my home, in those days at Queenstown, to Henrietta. After spotting the girl he would have fallen for Adolphus said that he decided to write a letter suggesting the idea of marriage to Agatha’s aunt with whom she grew at Henrietta.
According to the elderly man, within one week, he received an acknowledgement letter from Agatha’s aunt. This was the beginning of his courtship.
“The aunt requested in the letter that I must come and see the girl, because the girl [Agatha] said she did not know me. In those days young men used to court for one and two months then they got married.”
The marriage, between John and Agatha, the elderly couple, occurred on August 1, 1941, at the Holy Trinity Church at Henrietta. Adolphus’s best friend, Duke, was his best man.
Adolphus said that after the wedding he lived for almost 12 years at his wife’s aunt at Henrietta.
“At that time I used to work in the gold field and whenever I returned into the interior my wife would remain with her aunt.”
The union bore five children, two of whom are alive today. He described his sterling matrimony as years during which there was of both joy and minimal bickering. He said that he was responsible for the latter.
“In marriage you must have a little bickering, but do not allow it to go too far. As companions you must learn to solve your problems,” Adolphus stressed.’’
Accordingly he noted that God was another factor that helped in the sustenance of his 70-year-old marriage. “I find no barrier with my life. However, had a problem arisen that would have engaged the attention of the police, only then would I have opted for a divorce.”
The elderly man, who still attends to his poultry, is blessed with being healthy. And love has enhanced his responsibility of caring for his incapacitated 93-year-old wife, Agatha.
Agatha, currently exhibits signs of senility.
The elderly couple has between them, 70 grandchildren, 50 great grandchildren and 30 great-great grandchildren.
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