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Yorktown Couple Married for 53 Years: 'Marriage is Worth Working On'

Karl and Mariana Ehrmann have been married for 53 years.

Marriage is a struggle. 

But it's also a commitment that is worth fighting for and working on.

That's what Yorktown's Karl and Mariana Ehrmann said as they reflected on their 53-year-long marriage. 

The two met in 1958 in New York City where they were living. He was 23 and she was 21. The following year, they were married on July 12, 1959. 

They still remember the day they met – Karl was sitting on the stairs of an apartment building and was chatting with a friend – and their first date – that same day when Karl asked Mariana to take a stroll through Central Park. 

"I had seen her in the neighborhood and I thought she was an attractive woman," Karl, now 78, said. 

Karl, who was a civil engineer at the time, and Mariana, now 76, who worked as a file clerk when they met, found out they had a lot of things in common. Karl described his wife as a beautiful, intelligent person who loved to be outdoors. Mariana described her husband as a clean-cut young man, who eyes and voice she liked.

Even though, the couple has been through "severe storms," as they descibed it, in their 53-year-long marriage, including the loss of their son Thomas to a car accident, it was the power of their family and committment that helped them get through the hardships and stay together.

"We were meant to be together," Mariana said. "There was always a connection even when things weren't good."

Karl said even though he might get upset at his wife, she always knew he had a strong love for her.

By all means, their marriage is not perfect, they said, but it was one worth working on. 

And the secret to their long marriage?

"Faithfulness," Karl said.

"No matter what," Mariana added right away.

The couple has two children – Pettina, who lives in Ithaca, and Peter, who lives in Somers – as well as six grandchildren.

Karl said he has not given any marriage advice to his two children, but he hopes that though example, his children see how important marriage is and that they should put every effort to maintain that unit.

"Marriage is a struggle," Karl said. "You have to work on it."

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BettyEA February 14, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Thank you Mom and Dad for sharing this and for showing all of us that love is an action word worth persevering through and sacrificing for. Because of you, generations are witnessing the fruit of a committed marriage covenant. Thank you so much for everything. I'm blessed to have you as my parents and grandparents to my children. Happy Valentine's Day.
Anonymous February 14, 2013 at 03:35 PM
God Bless this couple!!! I wish them many more happy years together!!!!
My Brother Vinny February 14, 2013 at 08:36 PM
I love all the stories about couples that have spent years together!! Future generations should learn from true commitments and love!
Vishnu Patel February 14, 2013 at 10:06 PM
Mr. and Mrs. Ehrmann. Wish you and your entire family much Happiness. See you at YCCC. Vishnu Patel Councilman
TimRobyn Foote February 15, 2013 at 05:17 AM
What an awesome witness on marriage! May you both be blessed with much more love and happiness together!

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