Sault Ste. Marie couple marks 75th wedding anniversary
Walter and Lil Parniak are celebrating 75 years of marriage on June 15/21. They are both holding items from their wedding day, she is holding is her wax flower headpiece and he is holding his bow tie. (Mary Ellen Wenmann)
SUDBURY -- Walter and Lil Parniak were married at St. Veronica's Church in Sault Ste. Marie 75 years ago and are celebrating their diamond jubilee surrounded by their loving family.
On their wedding day, Walter was 20 and Lil was 17.
Their daughter Mary Ellen Wenmann, the youngest of the couple's five children, told CTV News her dad worked as a machinist at Algoma Steel while her mom stayed at home with the kids before they bought the farm in 1960 -- where they still live to this day.
"They became dairy farmers and after my parents sold the cows, they still worked the land and made it into a strawberry farm where people could come and pick strawberries," Wenmann said. "My dad also worked at Sault College as a machinist instructor. My dad retired and they just enjoyed life on the farm with no worries or cares."
Being together as a family was a priority for the Parniaks and they gave each of their kids a piece of land to build a home on, she said. They also get together every chance they get, whether it be for a birthday or when someone gets a new job or a new car, they would throw a party. It is a whole family affair too, with 17 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.
"I think that is what keeps our family together because my mom and dad made sure we were together," Wenmann said. "My parents are very faithful and they have prayed for us, helped us out every chance they could and were always present in our lives."
She describes her parents as fun and said they have "happy hour" in their house at 4 p.m. and her brothers and sisters would stop by after work if they could. Sometimes a happy hour would turn into dinner and she said her mom always had lots of food prepared just in case.
Wenmann said her parents, ages 94 and 92, have slowed down a bit and they are being taken care of by her sisters Linda and Sally Anne.
"We all admire and love them to pieces. We are very grateful for our parents," she said.