After having read this true life story written by Michaela L. Duckett
, I decided to adapt it
for this week’s ‘diary”. The couple (Ethel and Odell) got married last week, 65
years after they first met.
“He said I didn’t look old enough,” recalls Lagrand, 89.
Out of nowhere a guy she’d never met before stepped up and said, “She’s old
enough. She’s with me.” He took her by the arm, and the bouncer let them in.
The man that came to her rescue was Odell Robbins. Robbins, a World War II
veteran, had taken notice of Lagrand while standing in line. He said he liked
her style and the way she carried herself.
Ethel and Odell were living in Greensboro when they first met. They dated off
and on for several years, during which Odell moved to Philadelphia. They
maintained a long-distance relationship until he returned about six months
Then, Odell left again. This time, he stayed gone.
“When I came out of the army, I promised myself that I would see more of the
world,” Odell said. “I hadn’t seen enough of it overseas so I just started
Robbins stayed away for nearly 20 years.
“I didn’t even see my mama,” he says.
During their time apart, Odell and Ethel
married other people. Odell married twice and had seven children. All the while
Ethel remained on his mind and in his heart, but he did not see her again until
earlier this year.
That was June. The first time Ethel called Odell, she left him a message and
was elated when he finally returned her call.
“I still loved him,” she says. “When I got back in touch with him, all my love
came back. We started all over again… I was very much glad and so happy.”
Ethel traveled to Charlotte to see Odell, and when she arrived she wasted no
time making her intentions known.
“I asked his daughter how she would feel about me being her stepmother,” she
said of Odell’s youngest daughter, who lives in Charlotte. “She said she loved
me and would love for me to be her stepmother. She greeted me with love and I
greeted her back with love. I loved her the first time I met her.”
The couple married Oct. 11 at the Mecklenburg County Courthouse.
When asked why it took so long for them to get hitched, the couple said that was
just the way God planned it.
“I’ve been gone all of these years, and we found one another again,” Odell
said. “I know that wasn’t man. That was God, and I know God don’t play. I knew
then that she was my wife… I know that whatever God leads you to do, it is
“I just thank God for putting us back together,” the new Mrs. Robbins says.
“I’m happy now, and I want to stay that way,” Odell said. “We will never