Surrey couple marks 70th anniversary

Ken and Betty Chapman have literally battled rough waters together in their 70 years of marriage.

  • Aug. 17, 2011 4:00 p.m.

Ken and Betty Chapman have literally battled rough waters together in their 70 years of marriage.

Ken once swam a mile in the choppy waters of Laclu, Ontario, when no one else dared to. It was during an annual regatta at the lake.

The swimming event had been postponed due to stormy weather. That didn’t stop Ken – who was in his 70s at the time – from jumping in the water and Betty from tailing him in her rowboat.

Seated on the couch in their Newton townhouse, Ken gently lifts a scrapbook of memories from Betty’s hands.

Born three days apart, Ken and Betty – both 94 years old – remain young at heart.

“He’s lucky to have me, and I’m lucky to have him,” says Betty.

A collection of meticulously cropped black-and-white photos line each page of the scrapbook. A snapshot of Betty, all dolled up in a ruffled dress, catches Ken’s eye.

“She’s pretty good-looking,” Ken says smiling, his blue eyes twinkling.

Ken and Betty met in Winnipeg during the Great Depression. They lived two blocks away from each other, near the centre of the city.

“So I didn’t have to go far to find her,” says Ken.

The young couple’s dates consisted of a walk up to Main Street. Occasionally they attended picture shows .

“It was 25 cents to get in, and you came home with a piece of dinnerware. We got quite a few pieces,” recalls Ken.