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Allen and Marjorie Gillespie celebrate 70 years
Gillespie 70th Anniversary.jpg
Allen and Marjorie Gillespie are shown celebrating at their 70th anniversary party.

Allen and Marjorie Gillespie just celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. 

The couple met in West Tennessee where Marjorie lived at the time. Allen and his family were in that part of Tennessee for work and they happened to run into each other.

“My husband’s parents, well his whole family, for years were bridge workers and they were down there in West Tennessee working and we met at a skating rink,” said Marjorie.

They started dating and decided to tie the knot when Allen and his family were about to leave West Tennessee. The couple got married on Aug. 31, 1951 in Corinth, Mississippi.

“He was 17 and I was 15 and they were working there in that area and so they were just about ready to leave and move out and so me and him eloped and got married and went to Corinth, Mississippi,” she said.

Initially Marjorie’s father was upset that she eloped, but he eventually came around. 

“We went during the day time when my mom and dad were at work. My daddy was really upset about it. I had two older brothers and I was the only daughter and the baby child,” said Marjorie.

Marjorie’s brother had eloped two years earlier, and her sister-in-law was the only person who went with her and Allen when they eloped.

“I guess we were just young kids and thought we were in love. I guess that’s just what kids did back then,” Marjorie said.

Being married for 70 years is a monumental achievement. Over the years they have had many experiences and created a very nice life for themselves full of many children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and even great-great-grandchildren.

“Marrying young like we did, we’ve had ups and downs, but we’ve pulled through them. The most important thing we can say is our faith and love for the Lord and also we just feel really blessed we can have these 70 years and still feel young. We’re not young, but we can still get out and do what we want to,” she said.

They are the parents of Janice Gillespie, Randy Gillespie, Vicki Harris, and Tim Gillespie. They have eight grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren. 

According to their daughter, if you ask them how their marriage has lasted so long Marjorie will be the first to say because of their faith and love for God.

“Her favorite word is ‘blessed’ because they are so blessed,” said Janice Gillespie.

Recently, the couple was surprised with a 70th anniversary party in Pigeon Forge. They travelled to Pigeon Forge for their niece Debi Herald’s 50th anniversary party when the Heralds took the opportunity to celebrate the Gillespie’s 70-year marriage as well.