It’s a diamond anniversary for the Gardners

There is a special wedding anniversary coming up for Harry and Carolee Gardner, a couple who have strong ties to the community.

The Gardners will be celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary — 75th anniversary — on Tuesday, June 30.

Harry and Carolee were married June 30, 1945 in LaPorte and honeymooned in Chicago. Earl Gardner was best man and Jean Travis maid of honor, the couple’s son, Larry Gardner, wrote WNLP.

“Harry is a 1941 graduate of Hanna High School and Carolee is a 1944 graduate of LaPorte High School. Prior to retirement, Harry was a farmer in Hanna Township and Carolee a homemaker. The couple have been members of the LaPorte United Methodist Church for over half a century,” Larry said.

Harry first met Carolee when Carolee was 16 years old and working as a waitress at Isleman’s Dairy in LaPorte. “After their honeymoon, Carolee moved out of the city and onto the farm with Harry. There, they raised their children in an idyllic setting, providing them with a loving home and supporting them with time, money, and resources when they showed quarter horses in their teens,” Larry said.

When they sent Larry off to Purdue and daughter Lana off to Ball State, the couple spent the next 44 winters on Sanibel Island in Florida. Harry and Carolee moved off the farm to LaPorte in 2013 and to Hubbard Hill – Living Wisdom Community in Elkhart, Ind. in 2017.

A video collection of photos of their lives together can be viewed here: https://vimeo.com/431863424.

The couple’s family include their two children: Lana Weldy (who married Virgil, who is deceased) of Wakarusa, Ind., and Larry Gardner (married to Marily) of Delafield, Wisc.; four grandchildren, Scott Weldy (married to Susannah) of Wakarusa, Kristen Speicher (married to David) of Westfield, Ind., Grant Gardner (deceased), and Warren Gardner (married to Lauren) of Maplewood, Minn.; and five great-grandchildren, Claire and Christopher Weldy of Wakarusa, Noah and Lucas Speicher of Westfield, and Graham Gardner of Maplewood.

Today, Larry said, Carolee is 94 years old and Harry will be 97 on July 16.

“They continue to be the loving couple they have always been and keep connected to family and friends by US Mail, email, and Facebook,” he said.

Cards and notes can be sent to Harry and Carolee at 28070 CR-24 West, Apt. 407, Elkhart, Ind.  46517

24 Responses to “It’s a diamond anniversary for the Gardners”

  1. Paul Marsh

    Jun 24. 2020

    Congratulations on 75 years. Harry and Carolee were 4-H Horse and Pony leaders when I was in 4-H so that had to be pretty close to the beginning. What a great program that has given good rides to a lot of us. Harry was also a good farmer. He could plant 6 rows and pick 4. And that was before GPS!! You were ok going down, but coming back you had to be on your toes.

    Reply to this comment
    • Larry Gardner

      Jun 24. 2020

      Thanks for the kind word, Paul. Great to hear from you after all these years.

      Reply to this comment
      • Julie Euler

        Jun 26. 2020

        From my mother, Barbara Euler and myself the article and video just warmed our hearts! Congratulations and blessings to you both!

        Reply to this comment
  2. Mary Gardner Spiess

    Jun 24. 2020

    Congratulations to Harry and Carolee! Great article and pictures!

    Reply to this comment
  3. Willo Falstein

    Jun 24. 2020

    Thanks to my cousin I was directed to your wonderful story. I treasure my memories of the wonderful times we had together. Lana and Larry how lucky you are to have these lovely parents

    Reply to this comment
    • Julie Simpson

      Jun 27. 2020

      This is just beautiful..Congratulations Harry and Carolee on 75 wonderful years!! I am so blessed to have your friendship and will always hold you dear to my heart…Love you both!! Julie

      Reply to this comment
      • Jerry Edelman

        Jun 30. 2020

        I was blessed when I moved to SANIBEL 16 years ago and met Harry at our morning coffee group. Harry had a special seat that he occupied and that I took over when Harry and Carolee sold their unit.

        I miss you both and will always be willing to give up my seat if you ever want it back 😂

        Reply to this comment
  4. Gary Gardner

    Jun 24. 2020

    I hope I got some of the same Gardner genes as Harry. I didn’t know that my father (Earl) was Harry’s best man. I have many good memories from the farm, and a visit with Harry and Carolee on Sanibel Island. Congrats!

    Reply to this comment
  5. Carolee Gardner

    Jun 24. 2020

    Larry, I can’t believe you did all of this. It was wonderful and made me cry! We have had a wonderful life together and have two wonderful children.

    Reply to this comment
  6. Warren Gardner

    Jun 24. 2020

    Happy 75th to the best grandparents in the world!

    Reply to this comment
  7. Cheryl Gardner

    Jun 25. 2020

    Congratulations, Uncle Harry and Aunt Carolee! A wonderful tribute to a wonderful couple!

    Reply to this comment
  8. Greg Gardner

    Jun 25. 2020

    Congratulations, Uncle Harry & Aunt Carolee.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Lana (Gardner) Weldy

    Jun 25. 2020

    A great big thank you to my brother for producing this!!!! I’ve watched it multiple times now, and it just gets better. I could not have had more loving, supportive parents. And I am so blessed to STILL have them close to me!!
    With love, Lana (Gardner) Weldy

    Reply to this comment
  10. Laurie Klopfer

    Jun 25. 2020

    Congratulations, Harry and Carolee for lives well-lived! You have always been a wonderful example for everyone who knows you. It has been a pleasure to call you “family”.
    Sending Love and Best Wishes,
    Laurie & Mike Klopfer

    Reply to this comment
  11. Susannah

    Jun 25. 2020

    Thank you for being such a loving example of doing life together. We love you very much.

    Reply to this comment
  12. Carolee Gardner

    Jun 26. 2020

    We want to everyone that has responded so far for all the nice things they have said about us. We love all of you! God Bless ,
    Harry and Carolee

    Reply to this comment
  13. Jan & Dean Jessup

    Jun 26. 2020

    What a wonderful story, Larry. The video brought a tear to my eye, so many memories. Lana & Larry, you are so blessed to have had your mom & dad for so long. They have left an amazing legacy. Harry & Carolee, the two of you are truly an inspiration & wonderful example to the institution of marriage. Thank you for showing ….. it can be done!

    Reply to this comment
  14. Mary Hiigli

    Jun 27. 2020

    Harry and Carolee. Congratulations on this remarkable celebration.
    I have wonderful memories from so long ago, and horses are definitely part of those memories. I always wanted a horse, and I always admired Larry and Lana, and their beautiful horses.
    Your beautiful example of parenting can be seen in your children. What a wonderful legacy.
    Enjoy your very special anniversary.
    Love to you both.

    Reply to this comment
    • Karen KAMMRATH Coopee

      Jun 27. 2020

      Congratulations on a wonderful accomplishment .. to be together and to raise such a great family is such a blessing.. you have been quite an example for so many couples here in south La Porte County.. prayers and blessings that you enjoy many more years together and create a ton more memories..xo..
      I graduated with Larry from South Central.

      Reply to this comment
  15. Diana Bailey

    Jun 27. 2020

    Congratulations Harry and Carolee. Wishing you a wonderful day and hope you enjoy many more!

    Reply to this comment
  16. Dick and Fran Vickw

    Jun 27. 2020

    You two have been such an inspiration to us and we have enjoyed your special friendship for over 60 years…We treasure that. You are a wonderful couple and friends 💕

    Reply to this comment
  17. John & Sandra Anderson

    Jun 28. 2020

    How marvelous to reach 75 years of marriage! What a great example to your friends and family! We were blessed to have you stay with us here in Scotland in 1998, and then to join you in La Porte the following year when we were over singing with Brightons Parish Church Praise Group.Happy Times! The newspaper article is super and the video is so special. You are rightfully proud of your family! God Bless. Take Care and Stay Safe! Love, John & Sandra xx

    Reply to this comment
  18. Jerry &Cherie Hoover

    Jun 30. 2020

    Harry and Carolee
    Such an inspiration you have been to us. Time has passed but the wonderful memories we have with you both. Traveling on row crop trips and visits on Sanibel will be such heart warming memories that will be cherished forever. We farmed your farm for many years and will never forget how your door was always open and the friendships we’ve had will never be forgotten. We love you both and are thankful for your friendship.

    Reply to this comment
  19. Richard H Pierce Jr

    Jul 02. 2020

    Uncle Harry and Aunt Carolee

    You’ve have been blessed with a wonderful family and I have been blessed with a wonderful aunt and uncle. I shall always remember your hospitality in October of 2010. Just thanks for being you!

    Larry did a wonderful job with this production of your life together to make it that more special.

    Reply to this comment

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