Dance kindles a true love
Celebrating 60 years of marriage after half a century on 46ha farm
DOREEN had an inkling she liked Jim Pitman more than he liked her.
Even so, she bided her time getting to know the young man she met at a dance in Laidley one Saturday night.
Sixty-two years later, Jim and Doreen are celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary – a milestone few couples can tick off, so I guess you could say it worked out in the end.
“In 1956 I met up with Jim at the local dance,” Doreen said. “He didn’t seem as interested at the time as what I was in him.”
Doreen said her first impression of her now-husband of 60 years was that he was handsome and lovely natured but also a little reserved.
“He’s a wonderful guy, otherwise I wouldn’t have married him,” she said.
A friendship between Doreen and Jim blossomed and the couple became engaged two years later, for Doreen’s 21st birthday.
“We used to go to the dances and to the picture theatre, when Laidley had a picture theatre,” she said.
“Every Saturday night we met at dances.”
A year later, they exchanged vows surrounded by friends and family, many of whom attended their diamond anniversary celebrations this year.
The couple encountered every opportunity to prove they meant their wedding vows as they together experienced floods, sickness and drought.
For nearly half a century the newly married couple worked on a 46ha farm in Glenore Grove, growing potatoes, onions and lucerne.
In the beginning, when they’d just acquired the farm, they returned from their honeymoon to find their property badly flooded.
“It washed a lot of topsoil off the farm and our potatoes were just hanging by the seed,” Doreen said.
The hurdle did not turn the pair off farming and despite selling the farm and relocating to a home in Kensington Grove 12 years ago, the couple never felt better than they did on the farm.
“It was sad when we left the farm but Jim was 71 and I was 69,” Doreen said.
“I loved getting out, driving the tractor and baling hay under the stars at night. It was fantastic.”
Even so, the romance is strong.
“We’re still as happy as ever. We love each other very much, Jim and I,” Doreen said.
WEDDING DAY: Jim and Doreen Pitman are celebrating all things diamond this year to mark 60 years of married life.