Tomorrow night, New Years day, at about 11:30 PM I said “I do” to a 19yr. old Miss Rozella Ann Odle from Rosedale Kansas. That and few other major details was about all I new about her, except, at that time and place we needed each other rather badly. I new she didn’t like to back up when she set her foot down, she liked to laugh, she was very curious about everything, and she could cuss better than me if she had to. She was pretty, she had already seen enough pain, wasn’t sure about me, and I liked her dark hair and those eyes when I looked down in them. I didn’t know she loved to dance and was good at it, I didn’t know she could already cook as good as my Mom, and she wasn’t used to a lot of fine things around. She didn’t know I meant what I said or that I had no education, or that I had no skill I could earn a living with. But we did it anyway; 90 miles from home in Miami OK Jan 1 1961. She knew all I had was a full time job at an A&P store in Mission KS and the 1949 Chevy Club coop with the lowered front end, great big tires on the back, plus one pin striped suit that fit bad and a few cloths and guitar was all I had to start a life with. She brought two friends along, a girl she grew up with and her boyfriend who thought a double wedding would be fun to try. So here we were cold tired and excited to be so far from home and ready to take the only chance we had. We found out about 9 o’clock me and Al was under age and we had to have a parents signature. Our parents didn’t even know where we were… I had left home a year earlier and AL’s parents were in Washington State. Someone said just go find someone that will say they are your parents and your on your way. Al and I left the girls somewhere and we went to a local bar to find two patrons that needed $10 dollars and the four of us ( me Al and two drunks) took off to find the justice of the peace to sign the paper. The justice lived out in the country it seems and he might or might not answer the door if he was sober, We found his house and I knocked….the door opened and there in his bath robe with a patch over one eye like black beard the pirate, stood his honor. He wasn’t smilin’…..I had told my $10 dollar daddy how to spell my last name, (he got it wrong anyway), Al got signed on… I paid the justice for his service and back down the road we went, fast as we could. We dropped off the Dads at their bar with their new fortune and headed for the girls. Someone said hold it…we all have to get a blood test…..I didn’t like needles but agreed and we ran down to a Hospital and got “that” paper signed. “What time is it” someone said, if we hurry, we can be married on January the 1st….. we went back to the Corral Motel and Chapel where we got most of our info for our brand new license, stood up before a deacon and a little old lady on an old organ that knew the right song quite well, and made it just before midnight. Now I know she still likes to laugh, she can still dance, she can cook better than my Mom did, 56 years goes by fast when yer have’n fun…….and I know what love is.