For Berkshire Commons residents Doris and Earl Schultz exchanging matrimonial vows was as meaningful as it was 57 years ago. At a time when the Korean War was raging, suburbia was burgeoning, gas was about 16 cents a gallon, penny candy was a real value and a commitment lasted forever.The exchanging of marital vows ceremony was held on "Legacy of Love (and Marriage) Day" on Sept.11, as part of a National Assisted Living Week celebration. Doris Michale, Mobile Chaplain for the Reading-Berks Conference of churches presided.
"Actually, I also work with Wyomissing Nursing and Rehabilitation and the Manor at the Market Square assisted living centers performing religious services and resident visitations, as well."
Judging from the crowded room of spectators and fellow health-care facility residents, the event brought back their own sweet memories, as well.
The reception, complete with wedding cake, was held prior to the ceremony in conjunction with the evening meal.
As the audience of 40 or more slowly assembled, Commons Admissions and Marketing Director Kimberly A. Kostival beautifully serenaded the couple with a medley of appropriate religious and wedding songs.
Reverend Michale announced this "wonderful occasion" was not actually a wedding but a re-affirmation of their vows and encouraged other couples to consider doing the same.
She began by saying, "I charge you both...to remember that love and loyalty alone will avail as the base of a happy home."
Perhaps the Schultzes, originally from Allentown, were hampered slightly by the weight of four generations of passing time but the flame they shared then, seemed to burn just as brightly to this day.
Following the laughter at Michale's invitation: "Doris you may kiss the groom," she reflected on her marriage that has already spanned six decades, with the hope of continuing for many more years. When asked what was their legacy, Doris admitted, "It was having our children and with God in the midst of it all."
Her son Earl D. and daughter-in-law Debra Schultz of Exeter Township proudly said his parents raised their family, eventually leading to six-grandchildren and currently five grandchildren.
"Doris and Earl, may you continue to love each other forever," facility executive director Lynn Pellicciotti said.
In addition to exchanging of vows, the "Legacy of Love" Day's activities were culminated by a contest to guess the staff and residents pictured at their weddings and Kostival a compared matrimonial celebrations from other parts of the world to our own.
The Commons presented the week's agenda in hopes of rekindling fond memories for the residents the National Assisted Living Week festivities also featured a series of legacies: Grand Parents Day with Grandparent/Grandchild Bingo and an ice-cream social; a day dedicated to local history with Vicky Huffner of Berks County Historical Society speaking about Colonial Berks and retired Exeter Junior High history teacher David E. Coldren's slide show and discussion illuminating 10 historical sites within the township.
Movies/Radio Legacy Day had Charlie Adams as a guest speaker, movie trivia and a showing of the film "That's Entertainment."
On Sept.13, popular music took center stage with a Music/Radio Jeopardy game, Classical Music Trivia, Grand Pa's Ragtime Piano presentation and a Spirit of the Airwaves Players' "old Time Radio Show and finally on the "Legacy of Our Heirlooms" Day, the residents witnessed an "Antique Road Show" and "Things from the Past" from Paul Troutman.