He remembers reading a newspaper on an Oakland sidewalk when he saw her boarding a bus. He dropped his paper and began to stare.“People on the bus said, ‘That guy’s staring at you,’” Jack said.She remembers him nosing around, asking folks around the neighborhood who she was and where she lived (she was only half a block away, but he never realized it.)Then he saw her again one day walking along the sidewalk from his bedroom window.“I told my mother, I’m going to marry that girl,” Jack said. Just 10 months later, they were husband and wife. Jack said he was in a rush to marry her before he went into the service, but also “before somebody else would have got her.”Hilda blushed as if she were still a teenager.“He’s just the guy that I wanted,” she said.That was in 1942, back when Jack was just 26, and Hilda 19.The lovers gathered with friends and family Saturday to celebrate their 75th wedding anniversary at Carriage House Estates in Bakersfield, the senior living community where they live.
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