Sixty-three years ago, Annette Callahan broke Bob Harvey’s heart. The two dated throughout their junior year in high school together. Bob played football, and Annette recalls that she enjoyed watching him out on the field during games. Bob and Annette were happy together, attending school dances and going out with friends. Annette has especially fond memories of walking off the football field, hand in hand with Bob.
During the summer before her senior year, Annette went on vacation with relatives. While on this trip, she met John Callahan, the man who would become her husband in 1961. Annette knew that she would have to break it off with Bob as soon as she got back. So, when he met her at her locker, arms wide for a hug, she told him that she didn’t want to date him any longer.
Annette does have some regrets about that encounter, though. Looking back, she believes that she could have been kinder and more gentle in her approach. She didn’t want to stay in a relationship with him if she didn’t think that she was in love with him, but she remembers his face dropping when she told him that she no longer wished to date him. He didn’t say anything to her. Instead, he just walked away.
Bob Harvey eventually met and married his wife, another classmate, in 1959.
Annette and her husband raised four children, and Bob and his wife had two. The two former sweethearts lost track of one another over the years. Annette says she wondered about Harvey from time to time, but she had no way to get in touch with him.
In 2018, Bob Harvey’s wife died. In the same year, he discovered he was suffering from cancer. After a grueling year of treatments, Harvey’s doctor gave him a short respite from chemotherapy. He decided to hit the open road to clear his mind. During that drive, he listened to the old songs that he and Annette had danced to during their high school days. He soon found himself pulled over on the shoulder of the highway, crying. It was then that he vowed he would find her again.
Through an internet search, Bob found her husband’s 2015 obituary. By the time Bob Harvey found the obituary, Annette’s husband had been dead for nearly five years. He worried that she would have remarried, and he would have once again missed his chance.
But she hadn’t remarried. In fact, she’d been trying to find Bob for about two years. Annette says that she had no idea where he was, but she prayed that they would once again be led to one another. Luckily for them both, Bob had managed to track down her address. Annette was thrilled to receive Bob’s letter and immediately called the number he’d given.
The very next day, Bob showed up in her driveway with pink and white carnations. Annette remembers that he met her at her front door. He immediately told her she was beautiful and that he loved her.
A month later, Bob Harvey proposed to her. The engagement ring was a vintage, 50s era ring with a set of diamonds on either side of the center stone. The design serves as a symbol of their lives and their journey to find one another again. Annette explains that the three stones on one side represent Bob’s past, present, and future. The three stones on the other side represent her past, present, and future. The center stone is the future they will celebrate together.
The two wed on October 19th in a simple ceremony in front of about 35 friends and family members.