Dancing, Love, and Apple Pie: Russ & Elinor, Married 62 Years - Troy, NY

 

“Russell and Elinor Laustrup, married 62 years. Their love story began 65 years ago when Russ (18) and Elinor (15) met ice-skating. Everybody told them they weren’t old enough to be in love but they didn’t see it and were married on June 24, 1951. It was the year of the famous Nat King Cole song “Too Young” which became their wedding song and favorite. Out of a lifetime of love, came six children, 16 grandchildren and six great grandchildren (so far). The rest of their “family” is comprised of friends, old and new. Memories their children share of growing up include: their parents dancing in the kitchen every morning, camping at Rogers Rock every summer and countless family gatherings. They don’t recall their parents ever fighting or saying a cross word to each other. Because they didn’t. To this day they hold hands like love struck teenagers and seek each other out when separated with “Where is my sweetheart” or “Have you seen my honey?” Their home is the place where everybody gathers for joy & laughter and during the hardest of times. One of those times was four years ago when they lost their son Bob to a malignant brain tumor. He moved in with them when he was sick and they cared for him until he took his last breath. The door was always open for visitors. Still devastated by this loss, it would seem completely unimaginable to have lightning strike twice. But that is exactly what happened. Just three months ago, they lost their son Mark to a brain tumor. He lived around the corner and was at their home almost every day. They say no parent should ever have to bury a child. But to lose two sons to such a horrible disease, is just incomprehensible. Two men bravely battled their illnesses without a single complaint. And two parents patiently cared for them, giving them the love, space and dignity they needed. Courage only possible because of the strength of family. Russ and Elinor exemplify the purity of love in its every form. I can’t think of a more deserving couple for this tribute.”

Words submitted by family friend, Katherine