“Love is patient… it always protects, always trusts, always hopes and always perseveres. Love never fails (1 Cor 13)
I believe that this couple is specially blessed by God to experience the various shades of love in their life. They are married for 28 years and their successful married life has a lot to tell about the meaning of pure love!
Maryanne Martin and Tommy Pilling first met at a local training center for people with Down syndrome disabilities in 1990. They two had an instant connection on the very first meeting and it keeps its way up till today. Maryanne is the oldest of her mother’s four children. Her mother always treated her special child no different than her other children. So when she asked if the man she met at the center could come over for dinner, her mother Linda agreed.
“The day Maryanne met Tommy she came home with the biggest smile on her face,” Maryanne’s sister Lindi Newman said. “She couldn’t stop talking about him and asked if he could come for dinner.”
From then on Tommy started visiting Maryanne’s family on the weekends. While Tommy had lost both of his parents at a young age, Maryanne’s family soon became a blessing for him. After 18 months of successful dating, Tommy decided to propose her dream girl. Unable to afford a ring to propose with, Tommy bought a plastic ring to propose Maryanne. When he asked her mom if he could propose to Maryanne, she agreed and they picked a real ring to fulfill his desire. For Maryanne it was shocking news to “jump for joy” with a YES!
Even though not everyone was supportive of their union, the two got married in 1995. Their marriage was blessed in a church packed with many loving friends and family who shows their support for the special couple!
“When they walk down the street holding hands they make a statement but in a good way,” Lindi said. “Some people stare, they assume people with Down’s syndrome and learning difficulties can’t get married.”
And with the support of those closest to them, Maryanne and Tommy have now been together for over 28 years. 60 year old Tommy and 47 year old Maryanne live together in their own apartment .They enjoy each moments of their togetherness and have even renewed their vows twice since their wedding day! It’s clear their love is still as strong as ever!!
Seeing such powerful evidence of love , who can deny the fact that “Anything is possible with love and there should be no limitations for anyone, no matter what their circumstances are”!!