Then fate stepped in
Tuesday, Feb 13, 2018 06:00 am
It was fate that brought Olive and Gilbert Martin together so many years ago.
Olive was working at a café in her hometown of Big Valley when she first met her husband Gilbert.
She was 16-years-old at the time, and Gilbert was working as a truck driver out of Bonnyville.
He was in town for a brief period and was planning a night out with friends when he first laid eyes on his future wife.
“She was working and I was coming in for supper,” Gilbert explained. “There were three women there and I picked her.”
That night, Olive and Gilbert went with friends to the drive-in in Stettler on their first date.
They couldn’t recall what they saw, but it didn’t matter, because the rest was history.
The couple married on Sept. 2, 1961 at the Big Valley Anglican Church after a year of dating.
“We just decided to get married,” Gilbert laughed.
He had been driving over five-hours every other week to visit Olive in Big Valley. Some nights, he wouldn’t pull into town until after 10 p.m.
Olive was 17-years-old, while her groom Gilbert was 22 when they got married.
“I hitch-hicked from Watson Lake, YK to Big Valley to get married,” Gilbert said.
Because that was where he had been working at the time, they moved to the Yukon for three months, before settling down in the Bonnyville area.
“We have more or less lived here ever since then,” Olive said.
They went on to have four children, two boys and two girls.
Unfortunately for the family, the Martin’s two sons would later die from cancer, but not before bestowing them with grandchildren.
There are eight grandchildren and six great-grandchildren in the family.
“Gilbert worked away a lot, especially in the wintertime. There wasn’t much work here,” detailed Olive.
She was working as a bus driver, and eventually moved on to other occupations.
While raising their children, Olive volunteered as a Girl Guide and Brownie leader.
With over 56-years of marriage behind them, the couple understand the importance of knowing your partner.
“I think you should get to know your partner,” expressed Olive. “I just find sometimes people really don’t know them... There’s a lot of divorce.”
She continued, “I know it’s hard. Marriage takes a lot of work.”